Taylor Swift’s second gig of The Eras Tour in Brazil faced an unexpected turn, yesterday, as extreme temperatures and a devastating loss have seen the American singer-songwriter go on to postpone the show, marking a pivotal moment in the singer’s journey.
The decision to postpone the show was announced by Swift herself via Instagram. Expressing concern for the safety of her fans, performers, and crew, she highlighted the critical importance of prioritising their well-being. “I’m writing this from my dressing room in the stadium. The decision has been made to postpone tonight’s show due to the extreme temperatures in Rio. The safety and well-being of my fans, fellow performers and crew always has to come first,” she wrote.
The unforeseen circumstances stemmed from scorching temperatures exceeding 90F (33C) in Rio de Janeiro, prompting the artist to reschedule, and while Swift did not specify a new date, the event organiser Time4Fun (T4F) shared that the Eras Tour concert has been rescheduled to Monday, November 20, 2023.
The tragic passing of a devoted fan, named by the Brazilian daily newspaper Folha De S Paulo as Ana Clara Benevides Machado, aged 23, cast a solemn shadow over the event. Ana Clara Benevides, attended to promptly by medical professionals after feeling unwell during the first show, unfortunately succumbed to a cardiac arrest despite earnest efforts at emergency care.
T4F made the devastating announcement via a statement, that reads, “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.”
Reports from the stadium portrayed a distressing scenario, with videos circulating on social media depicting a fervent crowd in dire need of water amidst soaring temperatures. Swift herself paused her performance multiple times, demonstrating her concern and urging assistance for her fans’ hydration needs. The apparent struggles of the 60,000 attendees within the packed Nilton Santos stadium emphasised the severity of the situation.
“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.”
The heart-wrenching loss of Ana Clara prompted an outpouring of condolences and calls for action from fans on social media. The demand for a reevaluation of venue policies on water bottles intensified, reflecting the gravity of the unprecedented heatwave and its impact on concert-goers.
This tragic incident unfolded amid Brazil’s intense heatwave with reports suggesting over a hundred million individuals grappled with the repercussions of the extreme weather conditions.. Red alerts blanketed nearly 3,000 towns and cities, indicating the severity of the weather conditions and the challenges faced by the population. The “feels like” temperature soared as high as 137.3F (58.5C) on November 14, 2023, breaking the heat index record – and it’s still only spring in Brazil.
Swift, profoundly affected by the loss, expressed her grief and heartfelt condolences to Ana Clara’s family and friends. Overwhelmed by emotions, the singer shared her shattered feelings, acknowledging the profound beauty and untimely departure of her devoted fan.
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 this 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.”
Per the details shared in the Folha news report, Benevides arrived at the venue in the morning hours and fainted just before Swift’s performance commenced later in the evening. Emergency responders promptly attended to her before she was transported to a nearby medical facility, where she sadly passed away due to a cardiac arrest.
Additionally, reports suggest that a significant number, estimated unofficially by firefighters at around 1,000 individuals, suffered from fainting spells during Friday’s show. Among them, several attendees reportedly faced dehydration and fell sick.
Following Benevides’s tragic passing, numerous fans utilised social media platforms to advocate for a reconsideration of the venue’s policy prohibiting the entry of personal water bottles, citing the unprecedented heatwave conditions. As tonight’s event and the rescheduled show go ahead as planned – as far as we are aware – fans will be hoping that the venue reconsiders their water bottle policy, or find some better way to make sure every attendee is hydrated throughout the shows.
The unforeseen turn of events in Rio de Janeiro stands as a poignant reminder of the importance of prioritising the safety and well-being of all involved in live events, underlining the challenges posed by extreme weather conditions in large gatherings. We hope that every attendee, at the Brazilian shows, goes on to have an amazing time with memories that they can treasure forever – positive memories and moments that will be unforgettable for all the right reasons.
In a recent Instagram post, T4F have revealed a special action plan regarding the upcoming shows of The Eras Tour in Brazil for tonight and tomorrow night (November 19 and 20, respectively). Using Google Translate, we have gathered that the special action plan involves the provision of free water in the queues and at all accesses and entrances to the stadium and inside the stadium. They are also allowing attendees to bring their own glasses of water and processed food as long as they are sealed, with no limitations on the amount of said items.
On top of that, they are also allowing plastic bottles of water, Additionally, they’ve hired 200 extra employees to reinforce the service staff, which will see them join a 1,230 professional team who have been working on the event since the beginning. They have also expanded the medical care structure, providing more medical stations, ambulances, and mobile ICUs. They’ve provided tips so that attendees can be vigilant about their health and safety as well as the people around them.
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