The weather has been a challenge for Taylor Swift’s The Eras tour in South America. She rescheduled one show in Buenos Aires because of a storm. And on Friday in Rio de Janeiro, due to extreme heat, concertgoer Ana Clara Benevides, 23, collapsed at the venue and died later in hospital. Devastating for her family, devastating for the community, and devastating for Taylor.
Saturday’s show was then postponed to Monday. Last night, in cooler temperatures, and Taylor was back out there, in the rain. She had previously said on social media that she was too heartbroken to speak directly about the tragedy from the stage so, instead, presumably, she shared her emotions through her song “Bigger Than The Whole Sky” from Midnights (3am Edition). And these lyrics, lyrics written for another meaning, another purpose, take on a whole other significance here.
“Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye
You were bigger than the whole sky
You were more than just a short time
And I’ve got a lot to pine about
I’ve got a lot to live without
I’m never gonna meet
What coulda been, woulda been
What shoulda been…
Taylor Swift performed "Bigger Than The Whole Sky" in tribute to Ana Clara Benevides during her show in Rio de Janeiro on Sunday night. pic.twitter.com/Sn9Rekuuri— CONSEQUENCE (@consequence) November 20, 2023
It’s a tricky situation to manage, because Taylor was two places at once last night – in Rio de Janeiro, live, but also at the Billboard Music Awards where she won BBMAs and accepted in what was presumably a pre-recorded video message:
Obviously that was set in advance, and no one could have foretold what would happen to Ana on Friday. So from a public relations perspective, which is the work of it all, and that’s what we discuss here at LaineyGossip, going forward at this point in the immediate future, certain optics have to be considered or reconsidered. On his podcast, New Heights, last week, Travis Kelce talked about being in Buenos Aires with Taylor after she postponed one of the shows due to the storm, explaining that they decided to stay at the hotel and not go out partying out of respect for the fact that people’s schedules were being inconvenienced.
Which brings us to Monday Night and the football game and all the talk about whether or not their parents would be meeting each other for the first time. Taylor’s rescheduled show in Rio de Janeiro is tonight and she’s obviously not going to be there, I would imagine that, strategically, she and her team have been reassessing those plans – as they should. Right now, keeping it to the work, and the fans, and the music, and no other narratives, is probably the safest, smartest, and most sensitive decision.