Photo by Stephen Mease on Unsplash
A 23-year-old woman died during Taylor Swift’s Rio de Janeiro concert in the midst of a record-breaking heat wave on Friday, Nov. 17.
Her name was Ana Clara Benevides. She was a psychology student at the Universidade Federal de Rondonópolis, and she was reportedly a devout “Swiftie.” According to reports from Brazilian news organization Folha de S. Paulo, Benevides fainted in the front row at the Estàdio Nilton Santos concert venue after Swift got on stage. She received CPR for 40 minutes before she was transferred to the hospital where she died.
Benevides’ cause of death has not been released at this time.
Temperatures reached 140 degrees Fahrenheit, or 60 degrees Celsius, for the concert. However, fans were determined to see Swift’s famed “Eras Tour,” and unfortunately, the heat took a toll on a lot of them. According to Folha’s article about the situation, there were unofficial reports of a thousand people who fainted at the concert, and others who vomited because of the heat.
The venue had a strict water policy that concert attendees were not allowed to bring their own. Over the course of the night, many fans out of the 60,000 people at the concert were dehydrated. Pop Crave’s post on X showed that Swift asked venue staff to bring water for attendees, and she paused the show to start a “water” chant.
Swift posted a handwritten note on her Instagram story Friday night to express her sadness over Benevides’ death at her concert.
“I can’t believe I’m writing these words but it is with a shattered heart that I say we lost a fan earlier tonight before my show,” Swift wrote. “I can’t even tell you how devastated I am by this.”
Swift concluded her statement by sending condolences to Benevides’ family and friends.
“This is the last thing I ever thought would happen when we decided to bring this tour to Brazil,” Swift wrote.
Swift also decided to postpone her Nov. 18 show because the temperatures were still too high in Rio. The concert was postponed to Monday, Nov. 20.
After Benevides’ death, 200,000 people signed a petition to provide water at all venues in Brazil. This petition was immediately answered by Flávio Dino, the minister of Justice, and he took to X to explain a new policy.
The policy, according to a translated version of Dino’s post, states that people will be able to bring bottles of water in venues. The post added that shows with “high heat exposure” will be required to supply free drinking water stations, or “hydration islands.”
Swift is set to have two more shows in Rio before heading to São Paulo to continue her international tour.
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