Concert Gone Wrong: Astroworld Event 2021

Deeksha Kapoor ‘24, Contributing Writer

Who doesn’t want to attend their favorite artists’ concert for fun? The answer is always yes! However, many people would say that they wouldn’t have attended the Astroworld concert if they had a chance to redo November 5, 2021.

Travis Scott, a popular rap artist held his yearly Astroworld Event in Houston, Texas for the first time after the pandemic. Multiple artists such as SZA, Drake, etc. performed at the concert before Scott himself. The evening started calm and pleasant; however, as soon as Scott came on at 9 p.m., things started to take a turn. The crowd was over-populated with 50,000 people, in which some of them rushed in through the security.

As the night progressed, people began to push towards the front of the crowd without caring about crushing others. It became like a wave and was unstoppable. Many people were suffocated and stepped over and nine people died. Others fell unconscious and couldn’t get back up due to the immense pressure from the crowd. Even though many sources like The New York Times, justify that the security system took care of this situation, in my opinion it was unprofessional of the event organizers to let the audience get crushed. This showed the poor planning as well as the dangers that could take place during a concert and the lack of safety measures taken for precautions.

The first incident took place at 9:30 p.m. As the 29 year old rapper rushed to the stage along with Drake to perform “Goosebumps”, multiple mosh pits started forming in the crowd. One person had fallen unconscious and an ambulance was called into the crowd for help. Scott stopped the song for a couple of seconds but then resumed it. During the rest of the song, the young rapper could be heard saying “Y’all know what you came to do. I want to see some rages. Who wants to rage?”

It’s personally sad to look back and see how he encouraged the whole act, while being inconsiderate of everyone’s safety. Being on the stage, he had a clear view of everyone in the crowd so, I believe he could’ve stopped or delayed the concert. To add on, it was sad to hear how he had encouraged mosh pits which would have easily been avoided to respect everyone’s safety and enjoyment.

Even though the first responders were able to reach many and give them first-aid, many were injured and nine people passed away. Furthermore, people were reportedly using needles to inject unknown substances into others. This is another example of poor event organizing. In my perspective, everyone’s bags should be checked before their entrance to keep away from such avoidable incidents.

Not only were people abusing others’ personal space, they were also abusing the first responders. As the ambulances made their way through the crowd multiple times, many people abused the vehicle by standing on top of it while the paramedics were trying to help the injured. This is disrespectful and shows how some people truly don’t care about others when they are in critical condition.

If everyone would’ve stayed within a limit, then everyone collectively would’ve had a good time. It’s sad how concerts have gone from being a fun event to experience with friends to being a nightmare for many. It’s scary to think how an artist so wealthy could not stop the concert if their own audience’s safety is at risk.

On November 11, CNN released video footage of the parents of a victim, Bharti Shahni, one of the nine people who passed away at the Astroworld Concert. Her mom was crying in front of the media as she explained how that was the first time she allowed her daughter to go to a concert.

“Bharti was extremely excited and had all her outfits planned,” she added.

I was startled to hear the news as it is saddening to think of all the emotions that went through Bharti’s mom’s head when she received the news. That was the first time she had allowed her daughter to go to a concert and she didn’t make it out alive.

There are currently at least 80 lawsuits filed over tragedies at the Astroworld Concert. Scott himself took over the media the next day of the concert by canceling the second day of the event and sending griefs to the victims parents. He offered aid to the families who had lost their loved ones. However, due to his inconsiderate act during the concert many refused to take the help.

Fans from the concert took over social media the next day by posting on Tiktok, Twitter, and Instagram about the tragedy to spread awareness and call out the event organizers along with Travis Scott himself. I think that this was a good way to end the Astroworld event as it’s helpful for others to see first hand perspective from the audience who attended the concert, as to how dangerous it truly was.

Coming together as a community to pay respects to those victims who had lost their lives that night unknowingly, shows how humanity still cares about each other despite what happened at the concert. It’s important to make a statement to others about being careful when attending concerts, and serves as a reminder to concert organizers to take precautions to avoid such tragedies.

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