By Clara Prander ’22
The Astroworld Festival was supposed to be a normal festival but turned, for some people, into a nightmare. The 5th of November was the first of what was supposed to be a two day festival held by the famous rapper Travis Scott. The music festival is held in Houston, TX at a former Six Flags park. This year it was the third time it was held, starting in 2018 when he released his album Astroworld. As a highly popular rapper, supported by other famous rappers also performing, Travis Scott and co sold the 100.000 tickets to the festival sold within 30 minutes. Previous festivals lasted only a day, but with a larger crowd, Travis planned for it to take place over two days this year. Tragically due to a horrific incident, he canceled the second day.
Many fans were excited to see his performance, but during the concert a tragedy struck. Members of the packed crowd surged towards the stage and were crushed against each other during Friday night’s performance. There were also multiple mosh pits that created chaos among the crowd. At least eight people were killed in the chaos and twenty five were later transported to the hospital. The victims ranged between the ages of 14-27.
After the incident, Scott has received major criticism on social media.Videos from the night have been posted all over social media escalating the outrage. There are several different videos, one of them showing concert goers who try to yell for help, but instead are drowned out by the loud music. It’s not clear how many of the cries for help Mr. Scott heard, given that he was onstage and wearing in-ear monitors, but another video shows Mr. Scott on an outdoor stage, pausing and looking in confusion as an ambulance with flashing lights moved into the crowd. A video taken at 9:12 pm showed a group of tightly packed people. “Help… please help! Can be heard in the recording. Yet Mr. Scott continued with the show.
Travis Scott and his partner Kylie Jenner said they were “devastated” to learn that at least eight people died after the crowd surge. Jenner said that the two were not aware of fatalities until after the show. On Saturday night though his Instagram story, Travis Scott told his followers that he was working to “assist the families through this tough time.” On the Instagram story, he appeared distressed, while continuing to say, “My fans really mean the world to me and I always want to leave them with a positive experience.”
Right now there is a criminal investigation underway in Houston as law enforcement officials try to understand how the deaths occured. Investigators think that the crowd surge is what caused it, but it is still unclear what caused the crowd rushing to the front.