Tragedy occurs when young Taylor Swift fan dies in sweltering heat of Rio de Janeiro concert

by Jeff Yong

We must not think that rules made by people at the top are always right. Sometimes they border on the absurd.

Take the Taylor Swift concert in Rio de Janeiro in Brazil on Friday night: a 23-year-old fan, Ana Clara Benevides Machado, fainted in the sweltering heat and subsequently died of a heart attack later.

All because the rules say that people are not allowed to bring bottled water into the Nilton Santos Olympic Stadium. Seriously?

They were told they could only get them inside! But imagine the difficulty to even buy a bottle because of the massive crowds.

And the heatwave in Rio took the mercury level to 39.1 Celsius (102.38F) earlier in the day. And in the morning, parts of Rio hit their highest ever level at 59C or (138F). Things must be boiling and the authorities must be joking when they imposed the water ruling. Was it made in the cool comfort of their air-conditioned offices?

Now someone young has died. And Swift has postponed her second concert in Rio.

Writing in social media, Swift said she had a “shattered heart” after learning of the incident.

“There’s very little information I have other than the fact that she was so incredibly beautiful and far too young,” said the singer who later wrote that she felt “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 said.

Ironically, Swift was singing “Cruel Summer”, her second song, when the tragedy happened.

On Wednesday Nov 22, Coldplay’s Kuala Lumpur concert will take place at Bukit Jalil. Coldplay fans make sure you have enough water – irrespective of whether they are gonna play it cool or hot. Don’t take any chances! Health matters!

Thomas Fuller, a 17th-century British author, once said: “We never know the worth of water until the well is dry.”

And someone alluded this usefulness to an almost similar line used by Canadian singer Joni Mitchell in her pro-environment song “Big Yellow Taxi” — you don’t know what you got ’til it’s gone!

There’s certainly much for all of us to reflect here.


Jeff Yong’s not horsing around this time!