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Taylor Swift’s Rio tour marred by deaths, robberies and a dangerous heat wave

Taylor Swift’s Rio tour marred by deaths, robberies and a dangerous heat wave


“I didn’t imagine that my dream could turn into a nightmare.”

Photographer: Buda Mendes/TAS23/Getty Images for TAS Rights Management

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The deaths of two people, robberies and a dangerous heat wave left legions of Brazilian Taylor Swift fans angry and disappointed on the three-day Rio de Janeiro leg of the music superstar’s Eras tour. pop, which concludes Monday night.

Gabriel Mongenot Santana Milhomem Santos, 25, a fan who had traveled from the country’s central-western region to see Swift, was stabbed to death on a Copacabana beach around 3 a.m. Monday, Rio police said it’s a statement.

It was the second death of a Swift fan in four days. On Friday, Ana Clara Benevides Machado, 23, fell ill during the singer’s first show in the city and died that same night in a hospital.

Fans have also reported fainting from the extreme heat, being assaulted, or getting caught in a police raid.

The Rio Municipal Health Department said Benevides, who a friend said fainted during Swift’s second song, “Cruel Summer,” experienced cardiopulmonary arrest, but the exact cause of death is not yet known. Rio’s Forensic Medical Institute examined the body on Saturday and said additional laboratory tests needed to be performed, online news site G1 reported.

Taylor Swift fans wait for the doors of the Nilton Santos Olympic Stadium to open for her Eras Tour concert amid a heat wave in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023. A Taylor Swift fan from 23-year-old died at the singer’s Eras Tour concert in Rio de Janeiro on Friday night, according to a statement from the show’s organizers in Brazil. – Silvia Izquierdo/AP

In a statement posted to Instagram, Swift said Benevides’ death left her “heartbroken.”

Before Friday’s show, fans lined up for hours outside the Nilton Santos Olympic Stadium, where temperatures soared to 41 degrees Celsius (105 Fahrenheit), with a heat index of nearly 59 C (138 F). Inside the stadium, concertgoers complained of unbearable heat and some said they had difficulty accessing water.

“I didn’t imagine that my dream could turn into a nightmare,” said fan Kléssia Menezes, who told R7 TV that she had gotten stuck with hundreds of other people on one of the ramps to a VIP area on Saturday when police officers Security blocked the passage. entrance.

Once security let them through, she said, people started running and she fell onto a hot metal floor that burned her leg and back.

“They took me to the doctor… and I saw that I was not the only person who had fallen into this chaos,” he said. “A lot of people fell and burned.”

Ultimately, that night’s show was postponed, after tens of thousands of fans spent hours queuing in the heat. Swift announced on Instagram that it was necessary “due to the extreme temperatures in Rio.”

A fan who identified herself as Julia Alvarenga said she was upset that Swift didn’t decide to cancel sooner.

“Dude, can you see how much I’m sweating, how all the pores on my body are dilated by sweat?” Alvarenga asked, visibly angry, in a video posted on X, formerly known as Twitter. He then pointed to his waist, highlighting the extreme measures he had taken to attend a concert for which he knew he would queue for hours. “I’m wearing a diaper, a geriatric diaper,” he says, urging the artist to appear. “Come on stage, I want to see you!”

The postponement was followed by chaos outside the stadium. Under a light rain, a mass of concertgoers left the area, close to one of Rio’s working-class neighborhoods, known as favelas.

Videos shared on social media showed groups of pickpockets stealing fans’ belongings, scenes not so unusual for Rio residents, but far from the postcards that many tourists have seen of the “wonderful city.”

Many took shelter inside a Burger King, ducking for cover under tables and behind the counter in the kitchen area. Heavily armed police raided the basement of the fast food restaurant as loud sirens sounded and those trapped outside the restaurant screamed. Some of those who managed to escape in taxis were overcharged by drivers.

Saturday’s show was postponed to Monday night, but many of those who had traveled from other regions of Brazil and outside the country had already made plans to leave earlier.

“We are not going to be able to get there,” said Hely Olivares, a 41-year-old Venezuelan who had traveled from Panama. “A lot of people have wasted her trip.”



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