Immediately following Ariana Grande's Monday (May 22) night concert in Manchester, England, an explosion in the foyer of the Manchester Arena killed at least 22 and injured 59 around 10:30pm local time.
Shortly after that, armed police officers cordoned off the area surrounding the venue while police helicopters circled overhead; stretchers were wheeled into ambulances and sirens filled the air. Fans, some barely into their teens, and parents stood outside the Manchester Arena in a state of stock and confusion. Many were in tears and obvious distressed, milling anxiously outside, either waiting to locate relatives and friends or too stunned to comprehend the extent of the situation.
Survivors spoke of hearing a huge bang moments after Grande's finale "Dangerous Woman" ended and the house lights came on, and then of hearing people screaming and running out of the building in a panic. Others spoke of seeing people covered in blood. One recalled getting crushed as she tried to get out, only for a stranger to grab her and stop her from falling. Most people Billboard spoke to have described chaos after the explosion.