A Brazilian model has died after collapsing on the catwalk during Sao Paulo Fashion Week.
Tales Soares, also known by his stage name Tales Cotta, died after falling sick during a parade for the fashion brand Ocksa yesterday (27 April).
Paramedics rushed onto the stage to treat the 26-year-old in front of the horrified crowd.
Guests at the event had initially thought the fall was part of the model’s act. But it suddenly became clear the model was in serious conditions when he began to foam at his mouth.
Cause of death is unknown
On Instagram, the organizers of Sao Paulo’s Fashion Week posted a picture of the model with a message in Portuguese.
‘May God welcome you with open arms! Life is definitely a catwalk, we’re just passing through! Very sad!’ reads the translation.
It is yet to be confirmed how Soares died.
Following his death, footage began to emerge on social media of him collapsing shortly after making a swift turn on the runway.
WARNING: This video contains footage some viewers may find distressing
An advocate for LGBTI rights
The model had posted on his Instagram accounts from the backstage of the show hours before his death.
A friend of Soares has confirmed to GSN that the model was gay and that he vocally advocated for LGBTI rights. Postings on social media show Soares with a rainbow flag and vocally opposing Brazil’s anti-LGBTI president Bolsonaro.
‘He was gay and an advocate for LGBTI rights,’ Faelo Ribeiro told GSN.
Ribeiro works as a photographer and owns the agency All Models, the first to sign Soares.
‘In the last messages he sent me, he asked me to attend the shows, that he wear a beautiful outfit and that this year he would consecrate himself on the runways, ‘ Ribeiro told Brazilian magazine Universa.
‘Tales died doing what he loved most.’
He wanted to study to become a chef
Tales had been a model since he was 18 years old and lived in Sao Paulo since 2017.
He attended Physical Education at the Federal University of Espírito Santo (Ufes) when he began to take his first steps in the fashion world.
In an interview with Harper’s Bazaar Brazil, he spoke about the beginning of his career.
‘I always went to school and got a degree in physical education; soon after, I moved to São Paulo to invest more in the modeling career and was run by the MGT Base,’ he commented.
‘The career is really too short and I’ve always found it to be good to have a B plan, but in fact, I do not intend to continue as a physical education professional. I’m thinking of studying gastronomy since I love cooking and I think it’s a very interesting course,’ he said.
Before that, he wanted to pursue a career as an international model.
‘The idea now is to invest in the international career. Maybe go to London and enjoy cooking there,’ he said at the time.