After frustrated exchanges with audiences at two British concerts last week, concerning the volume and intensity of fans’ screaming, pop star Justin Bieber walked off the stage of his Manchester, United Kingdom, show Sunday night.
“I appreciate all the support, I appreciate love, the kind things,” the Canadian singer, 22, said between songs at Manchester Arena, according to numerous audience videos posted on Twitter and YouTube. “But the screaming during these breaks has got to stop. Please and thank you,” he added, as the screaming swelled in response to his statement. “I don’t think it’s necessary,” he went on. “I want to be able to say something here when you guys are screaming . . . ” after which his words became unintelligible under the din. He then exited, stage left.
Sometime later he returned, lecturing to the crowd, “I’m not quite sure why you guys came tonight. I hope it was to enjoy my company as well as my really enjoying your company. But I feel like I want to connect with you, you know? I think that my point of the no-screaming thing is so that when I’m looking at you in the eyes you can actually know that we’re having a moment and having a connection, right? So it’s not just [me] trying to being be an [expletive]. It’s just me really wanting to have a moment.
“And like, Manchester, you guys are awesome and I appreciate you,” he continued promisingly. “But like, then it has to be obviously not just — I’m not gonna,” he stammered, before concluding, “I’m just gonna quit talking, right? I’m just not gonna talk for the rest of the night and we’re just gonna do the music because obviously Manchester just can’t handle it. So let’s do the music.”
Later, before the final song, he explained, “Probably the reason why I got so upset is maybe because I traveled across the whole world to come here and . . . I’ve dedicated my life to this. I’ve dedicated my life to [being a] performer and I’ve dedicated my life to try to bring smiles to people’s faces. And I feel like people just aren’t giving me the same respect back, and courtesy. So that’s all. And I appreciate you guys coming out.”
At a Thursday concert in Manchester, his first of three there, Bieber more philosophically had told the crowd, “The reason why I started the ‘Purpose’ tour is because I believe everybody in this building has a purpose. . . . Sometimes we forget, like, why we’re here, what’s my purpose. And sometimes it’s like, man, I don’t even know what my purpose it.” As the crowd screamed, he turned his microphone in the audience’s direction, saying sarcastically, “Do you want to take it? You can talk if you want. No?”
He finally declared, “I thought I could have a moment of, y’know, tryin’ to say something. But if not I’ll just get to singing if you guys don’t want to hear me speak. I don’t mind cutting the [expletive], because I don’t need to talk. I’m just trying to engage. But if you guys don’t want to do that, we’ll just play the music. This is my purpose.”
Bieber had also asked the crowd to quiet down at Barclaycard Arena concert in Birmingham, U.K., on Tuesday.