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Taylor Swift concertgoers heard chanting for water at sweltering Brazil show where fan died

Swift, 33, said she was ‘devastated’ after a 23-year-old fan died at her Rio de Janeiro concert on 17 November

Maanya Sachdeva
Monday 20 November 2023 04:04 GMT
Taylor Swift T-shirt projected onto Christ the Redeemer as singer arrives in Brazil

Taylor Swift’s most recent Eras Tour show in Brazil ended in tragedy, after it emerged that one of the singer’s young fans in attendance had died from a cardiac arrest.

The show’s organisers T4F confirmed the news with a statement on Saturday (18 November), after Brazilian daily newspaper Folha De S Paulo named the 23-year-old woman as Ana Clara Benevides.

Their statement read: “It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Ana Clara Benevides Machado, 23. Last night, Ana Clara felt unwell and was promptly attended to by the team of firefighters and paramedics, being taken to the medical center at the Nilton Santos Stadium for first aid protocol.

“Given the situation, the medical team chose to transfer her to Salgado Filho Hospital, where, after almost an hour of emergency care, she unfortunately died,” they continued. “To the family and friends of Ana Clara Benevides, our sincere condolences.”

In the wake of her death, several Swift fans are using social media to highlight conditions inside the packed Nilton Santos stadium in Rio de Janeiro on Friday (17 November).

Audience members can repeatedly be heard chanting for water during the show, as the apparent temperature reportedly rose to 60C, in videos posted on Instagram and X/Twitter.

These fan-shared clips also showed Swift stopping her performance multiple times to ask for bottles of water to be distributed among the 60,000-strong crowd.

“Sorry, it’s just that it’s very hot, so when somebody says they need water, when it’s this hot, they really need it,” the 33-year-old singer can be heard saying in one video. “We don’t need to chant, it’s totally fine. We just need to get water to them.”

On Saturday afternoon, T4F announced that water stations would be provided at the Nilton Santos stadium in Rio de Janeiro for the second show that night.

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Fans are also allowed to bring in sealed water containers - and the company increased its event staff by “around 200”.

Brazil is currently in the grip of an intense heat wave, with the “feels like” temperature recorded at 58.5C on Tuesday (14 November).

Earlier this week. red alerts were issued for nearly 3,000 towns and cities across the South American nation, as over a hundred million people have reportedly been impacted by the extreme weather.

According to the Folha news report, Benevides arrived at the venue at 11am and fainted shortly before Swift’s show began at 7.30pm. She was reportedly resuscitated before being transferred to a local hospital, where she died from a cardiac arrest.

It was also reported that 1,000 people fainted at the show on Friday, according to firefighters’ unofficial estimates, with several people allegedly becoming dehydrated and falling sick.

After Benevides’s death, several fans took to social media to urge organisers to life the ban on bringing water bottles inside the venue, in light of the unprecedented heatwave.

One person wrote that “they should be passing [water] out for free in that weather” on Instagram, joining several social media users asking for the venue policy around water bottles to be re-evaluated.

The Independent has contacted representatives for the stadium, as well as organisers T4F, for comment.

In the wake of Benevides’s tragic death, Swift said she was “overwhelmed by grief” in an emotional statement on her Instagram Story.

Taylor Swift issues statement after fan’s death at Brazil show (Instagram/Taylor Swift)

She wrote: “I can’t believe that I’m writing these words, but it is with a shattered heart that I say we lost a fan earlier tonight before my show.

“There’s very little information I have other than the fact that she was so incredibly beautiful and far too young.

“I’m not going to be able to speak about the from stage because I feel overwhelmed by grief when I even try to talk about it.

“I want to say now I feel this loss deeply and my broken heart goes out to her family and friends.”

Swift is scheduled to return to the Nilton Santos stadium on Saturday (18 November) and Sunday (19 November) for two more shows of her Eras Tour.

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