Videos show Travis Scott’s Astroworld concert continued despite desperate pleas for help from the crowd

Eight people died and several were injured at a Travis Scott concert in Houston late Friday after a crush of concertgoers swelled toward the stage. An estimated 50,000 people attended the sold-out 2021 Astroworld Festival at NRG Park to see Scott, whose concerts have a reputation for being raucous.

Videos of the night show a chaotic scene in which concertgoers tried to yell for help but were drowned out by loud music. It’s not clear how many of the cries Scott heard, given that he was onstage and wearing in-ear monitors. The videos, mostly taken by members of the crowd, reveal a sense of panic that spiraled over the 70 minutes in which Scott performed his set.

The Washington Post reviewed dozens of videos from the night to understand how the mass-casualty event unfolded. The Post synchronized video from the audience with a live stream of Scott’s performance published by Apple Music. Key moments of synced videos display a tumultuous scene from the crowd’s perspective, which includes concertgoers receiving medical aid and others trying to stop the concert, as the show continues.

Calls for help from the crowd

Scott takes the stage at around 9 p.m. to a roaring crowd. An overhead shot in a video live-streamed to Apple Music shows a massive, swaying crowd.

(Video: Apple Music)

Houston Fire Chief Samuel Peña said in a news conference following the event, “At approximately 9 o’clock, 9:15, the crowd began to compress towards the front of the stage and that caused some panic and it started causing some injuries. People began to fall out, become unconscious and it created additional, additional panic.”

Video from 9:12 p.m. showed a group of tightly packed people. “Help … please help!” can be heard in the recording.

At this point in the concert, Scott is still performing.

Video shows crowd yelling for help at a Travis Scott concert on Nov. 5. (Video: Jack Scampi)

Roughly 21 minutes into his set, Scott pauses and hunches over. The crowd chants “Travis!” Scott straightens up and walks to the right side of the arena and points offstage. He asks for the lights. “Make some noise for my boy right there hanging in the tree.” In a video from Tré Pixley who was in the crowd at the same time, people wave at the stage shouting, “medic!” Scott tells everyone to put their middle fingers up in the sky “because they are ready to rage” and begins his next song.

Travis Scott encouraged a fan hanging in a tree at his concert on Nov. 5 in Houston, while others in the crowd yelled for a medic. (Video: Apple Music/@Tre5pix)

Attempts to alert cameras

At around 9:30 p.m., a concertgoer climbs up a ladder to a raised platform and tries to get the attention of camera operators. People in the audience are agitated, and the man points generally to the crowd and yells, “Shut the f--- up. Someone’s in there. People are f---ing dying. I want to save somebody’s life. That’s somebody’s kid … I want to save them.”

In this same moment, Scott notices what appears to be a golf cart with flashing lights in the crowd. He asks the audience to raise their middle fingers if they are okay. They do. He then asks for two hands in the sky. “You all know what you came to do, Chase B, let’s go,” he says. “I want to make this motherf---ing ground shake.” Concertgoers respond with both hands in the air.

A member of the audience at a Travis Scott concert on Nov. 5 in Houston tries to stop the show as it turned deadly. (Video: @CleaSena / Apple Music)

Video of the same scene from another angle shows a woman reaching the same platform and camera operator the man was attempting to get to earlier. She tries to speak to the operator and steps in front of the camera. Her comments to the operator are not audible in the video.

The concert goes on.

A woman at the Travis Scott concert on Nov. 5 in Houston tries to reach a camera operator. (Video: @Andy_Pacheco_)

Scott calls for security

At around 9:42, Scott stops mid-song after noticing someone in the crowd passed out. “We need somebody to help him. Somebody passed out right here. Somebody passed out right here. Hold on, don’t touch him, don’t touch him,” he says. “Everybody just back up. Security, somebody help, jump in real quick, keep going … Somebody jump in, come on, come on, security get in there. Let’s get it in there, let’s get it in there, let’s get it in there, let’s get in there.” Video from the Apple Music live stream shows what appears to be security members in bright green jackets arriving to the area Scott points at.

Scott then continues to perform.

Travis Scott stopped his concert on Nov. 5 in Houston to ask for help for someone who had passed out, but continued to perform. (Video: Apple Music)

At the same time, video from the crowd shows a Houston Police officer and other officials carrying a man to the side of the stage. While they are in the same area Scott is pointing to, it is not clear if this is the same passed out man Scott referred to onstage. They lay him on the ground and a police officer appears to offer him assistance as the performance continues in the background.

Houston police officers and other officials provide medical assistance at the Travis Scott concert on Nov. 5 in Houston. (Video: Derek Trayer)

Another video from around 9:43 p.m. shows a group of people chanting in unison, “Stop the show, stop the show!” The video shows people waving their arms and pointing.

Several people yell "Stop the show" at a Travis Scott concert on Nov. 5 in Houston. (Video: Unknown)

The concert stops roughly an hour after videos from the crowd showed concertgoers visibly in distress and yelling for help.

Mayor Sylvester Turner (D) said the dead ranged in age from teens to young adults. According to Peña, the causes of the deaths had not yet been determined. He added that at least 11 of the 17 people taken to the hospital were in cardiac arrest and required CPR.

Matt Keyser and Peter Stevenson contributed to this report.

correction

A previous version of this article misstated what Travis Scott was saying in a video. He actually says, "You all know what you came to do, Chase B, let's go." Chase B was the DJ performing the set with him. The article and video have been corrected.

Complete coverage: 10 dead in crowd surge at Astroworld Festival

A crowded music festival in Houston turned deadly on Nov. 5 when a crush of concertgoers surged toward the stage where rapper Travis Scott was performing. Ten people have died.

The crowd surge victims include a 14-year-old who loved baseball, two friends celebrating a 21st birthday and a 27-year-old attending the concert with his fiancee. Here’s what we know about the victims.

At least seven of the 10 dead were clustered in a small area enclosed on three sides by metal barriers that became dangerously crowded.

Videos from the concert, where an estimated 50,000 people gathered, show attendees pleading for the event to end. Here’s what those videos show.

A criminal investigation is underway in Houston as law enforcement officials seek to understand how the deaths occurred.

Travis Scott’s concerts are known for their wild energy and the Astroworld Festival, launched in 2018, has become his signature event. Scott’s partner Kylie Jenner said early Sunday that he was unaware “of any fatalities until the news came out after the show.”

Fatal crowd surges at concerts continue, despite calls for tighter standards and security, experts say. Here’s a history of these events.

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