A 23-year-old Taylor Swift fan, Ana Clara Benevides Machado, passed away on the night of November 17 at the Eras Tour concert in Rio de Janeiro. The cause of her death remains undisclosed.
Rio’s public prosecutor initiated a criminal investigation, and Benevides’s body is undergoing examination.
Prior to the concert, she shared a video on Instagram donning a Taylor Swift T-shirt while waiting in line under an umbrella. Like many others, she endured hours in the sun before gaining entry to the stadium.
Benevides told her followers while fanning her face that she’d arrived at 11 a.m., for the show which began around 7:30 p.m., and was “still in the mess.”
Ana Clara Benevides Machado’s friend, Daniele Menin, who attended the concert with her, informed the online news site G1 that Benevides fainted during Taylor Swift’s performance of her second song, “Cruel Summer.” Menin expressed that they had always planned to attend a Taylor Swift conctert in Brazil despite the high ticket cost. Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes deemed the “loss of a young woman’s life” unacceptable.
Taylor Swift, in a handwritten note on social media, expressed that her heart was “shattered” by the tragic incident.
“There’s very little information I have other than the fact that she was so incredibly beautiful and far too young,” the singer wrote of the young woman.
Those who attended the concert complained that they were not allowed to take water into Nilton Santos Olympic Stadium despite soaring temperatures, and federal authorities announced that free water would be made available at all future concerts.
The show’s organizer, Time4Fun, said on Instagram that paramedics attended to Benevides after she reported feeling unwell. She was taken to a first-aid center and then to a hospital, where she died an hour later, the statement from the Brazilian live entertainment company said.
Fans who attended the Friday show said they were not allowed to bring water bottles into the stadium even though Rio and most of Brazil have had record-breaking temperatures this week amid a dangerous and lasting heat wave. The daytime high in Rio on Friday was 39.1 degrees Celsius (102.4 degrees Fahrenheit), but it felt much hotter
Apparent temperature — a combination of temperature and humidity — hit 59 C (138 F) Friday morning in Rio, the highest index ever recorded there.
Elizabeth Morin, 26, who recently moved to Rio from Los Angeles, described “sauna-like” conditions inside the stadium.
“It was extremely hot. My hair got so wet from sweat as soon as I came in,” she said. “There was a point at which I had to check my breathing to make sure I wasn’t going to pass out.”
Morin mentioned that she consumed an adequate amount of water but observed numerous individuals appearing distressed, with some urgently requesting water. While Morin managed to obtain water from the sidelines of her area, accessing water was notably challenging in other sections of the stadium, particularly for those concerned about maintaining their specific positions.
During the concert, Taylor Swift interrupted her performance, requesting water to be provided to a group of people who had captured her attention, as reported by Morin.
“They were holding up their phones saying ‘We need water,’” she recalled.
Justice Minister Flávio Dino said on X that the ministry would implement “emergency rules” in response to the situation. He later announced that “water bottles for personal use, in suitable material, will be allowed” at concerts and other events and that show producers must provide free and easily accessible drinking water.
Swift has two more shows scheduled in Rio, one on Saturday and one on Sunday. State prosecutors said in a statement they would “monitor measures that seek to avoid new problems and guarantee the protection of the health of the public.”
As authorities probe the details surrounding the death, Mayor Paes stated that the municipality will insist on additional water distribution points, increased emergency services, including brigades and ambulances, and an earlier commencement of the show.
Taylor Swift, in a written statement, expressed her inability to address the incident on stage due to overwhelming grief. She conveyed deep sorrow for the loss, extending condolences to the family and friends of the deceased.