Tinchy Stryder and Girls Aloud singer Nicola Roberts pulled in the biggest crowd yet for Albert Square’s Christmas light switch on yesterday.
‘Prince of Grime’ Tinchy Stryder stole the show with electric performances of ‘Number 1’ and his new single with Calvin Harris, ‘Rollercoaster’.
Donning sunglasses, laid-back Tinchy sent the crowd wild.
“I just love the Manchester crowd”, the 25-year-old rapper said.
This was the first time Tinchy switched on Manchester’s Christmas lights.
Hundreds of Tinchy fans were present at the show, and among them was Medy, 17, a student from Belgium who said: “His music is just different in many ways.”
In regards to his plans, for 2012, Tinchy said: “The sky’s the limit.”
Girls Aloud fans were rooting for Nicola Roberts as she entertained the crowd with a dub step cover of ‘I Need Your Loving’ and her new track ‘Everybody’s Got To Learn Sometime’.
The ‘Dance To The Beat Of My Drum’ singer was wearing a white gillet and black leather trousers, which highlighted her exceptionally slim figure.
About being in Manchester, she said: “It’s lovely. It’s nice to be here.
“Manchester holds some special memories.”
While in Manchester, Nicola stayed at The Lowry in Salford, the same place where she had her first audition for the TV show that catapulted her to fame, ‘Popstars: The Rivals’. She also met fellow Girls Aloud bandmate Kimberly Walsh for the first time there.
Next year marks the ten-year anniversary of the band, but when asked about a possible reunion, Nicola remained tight-lipped.
Manchester’s Lord Mayor, Councillor Harry Lyons, spoke to the crowd about the importance of the ‘I love Manchester’ campaign, which has raised £100,000 already. The campaign aims to raise £500,000.
Former Emmerdale star Suzanne Shaw, also at Albert Square, talked about her forthcoming performance in Cinderalla at Manchester Opera House which ends on 31 December.
In regards to returning to Emmerdale, the actress from Bury said: “You can never say never, especially with soaps. I had such a good experience. I would love to go back.”
The ‘Dirty Dancing cast’ performed ‘The time of my life’. Dirty Dancing is going to be performed at the Palace Theatre from 22 November till 7 January 2012.
Manchester Show Choir performed a touching rendition of Madonna’s ‘Like a prayer’ and Bon Jovi’s ‘Living on a prayer’ and the Printworks street dance competition Soar I.N.K. got the crowd dancing to some popular hip hop tunes.
Tinchy Stryder and Key 103 presenters Mike Toolan and Chelsea Spokes, who hosted the show, urged the crowd to countdown as they switched on the Christmas lights.
“I love the Christmas spirit”, said Katie Smith, 22, from Ancoats.
The performances and celebrity appearances were not the only things that attracted Mancunians. Nineteen-year-old student Saima said she went along to Albert Square to see the fireworks because she had missed Bonfire Night.
The finale saw a dazzling display of fireworks which lit the Town Hall.
“It’s like the community are one big massive family”, 13-year-old Demi said about the event.