Exclusive: The fans who lit up Harry Styles’ concert with a giant gay rainbow reveal how they did it
Two Harry Styles fans arranged for 15,000 people to create a gigantic lit-up rainbow at his concert – and they’ve revealed to PinkNews how they pulled it off.
The O2 Arena in London came alight on Wednesday night during Harry’s rendition of Sweet Creature.
The arena became an LGBT beacon, with two-thirds of attendees holding coloured pieces of paper over their phone torches to make a Pride flag.
And on Thursday, the concert should be fully lit up with a dazzling rainbow, as every fan in the arena is set to have a coloured piece of paper.
And it’s all down to two young fans and an idea which grew into a global story.
Luna Riedel, 20, told PinkNews that it all started when she met Ksenia Kulikova, 17, less than a year ago because of One Direction, and became close friends.
The fan, who comes from Germany, said that “at one point we discovered that we were both going to the London shows for Harry, and thought about doing something for him to thank him.”
That was how the Rainbow H Project was born.
Luna added that “everyone in this fandom – or how I like to call it, family – is welcome, no matter who you are.
“Sweet Creature was chosen as the song as Harry sings about the person that makes him feel like home, and for us it’s him.”
Ksenia agreed with this assessment, saying that “he makes us feel like home.”
“In Sweet Creature he sings: ‘You bring me home.’ It is a beautiful ballad and creates that warm feeling of being home. That’s why we chose that song.”
The song sees Harry sing: “We don’t know where we’re going / But we know where we belong / And oh we started / Two hearts in one home.”
The pair – one of whom is LGBT – set up Instagram and Twitter accounts to spread their message, but that wasn’t enough for what they had in mind.
Luna said that “after setting up all the accounts and starting to reach people, we thought about how massive the O2 is and how tweeting about it 100 percent wouldn’t be enough, as it wouldn’t reach everyone in the arena.
“So we knew we needed help, and started asking if people would actively want to help us.
“That’s how we found our lovely groups for each day, and with their help we created a coloured piece of paper with instructions for every single person in the O2 for both days.”
Ksenia, who said she sees Harry “as an LGBT icon,” a view many share, told PinkNews that she loved the sight of the plan coming to fruition.
“I felt proud of myself and our big fandom,” she said.
“I was standing right in the front row last night, and people shouted to me: ‘You did it.’ I was happy that we could do something for Harry and create a beautiful safe space for everyone.”
Luna said: “It was amazing, pure happiness and love.”
Unfortunately, security confiscated 5,000 of the pair’s coloured pieces of paper.
“Some of the security were really supportive, but some weren’t and took some of our project stuff off us,” Luna said.
“We thought it wouldn’t work out, but it did, which shows how powerful we as a family are, and what we can achieve.”
She said it was “really crushing” to have a quarter of the pieces taken away, but that the situation would be different on Thursday.
“They told us we needed official permission for it, which we didn’t know. It was sad, but I mean, they just follow their rules, and that’s okay.
“They just messaged us giving us the permission and offering help for tonight, so I am really thankful for that.”
Last month, Harry provoked an outpouring of enthusiasm from fans after lyrics in his new song seemed to reveal his bisexuality.
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And he conspicuously used bisexual lighting at his Wednesday night concert.
The former One Direction singer spoke about his sexuality before, saying last year that he had “never felt the need” to label himself.
He has also long been a supporter of LGBT rights, having performed with a rainbow flag draped over his microphone last year during his ongoing solo tour.
He even made a subtle jab at Donald Trump and his anti-trans policies in October, during his Washington DC concert – by waving a transgender flag.
And fans were delighted when the star kissed Late Late Show host James Corden during a festive edition of Carpool Karaoke.