Brazilian singer Marilia Mendonca dies in plane crash

Latin Grammy winner was known for tackling feminist issues in her songs

Singer Marília Mendonça performs in Sao Jose dos Campos, Brazil, Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021.  One of Brazil’s most popular singers and a Latin Grammy winner, Mendonca died on Friday, Nov. 5, 2021, in an airplane crash on her way to a concert. Mendonça was 26 and performed country music, in Brazil called sertanejo. (Will Dias/Futura Press via AP)

Popular Brazilian singer Marilia Mendonca died in a plane crash on Friday on her way to a concert.

The Latin Grammy winner's press office confirmed her death in a statement and said four other passengers on the flight also perished.

Their plane crashed between Mendonca’s home town of Goiania and Caratinga, a small city in Minas Gerais state to the north of Rio de Janeiro.

Minas Gerais state’s civil police also confirmed Mendonca’s death, without providing details about the cause of the accident, which occurred shortly before the plane landed.

Photographs and videos show the plane lying beneath a waterfall.

Poignantly, Mendonca had posted a video this afternoon showing her walking towards the plane, guitar case in hand.

The rising star performed sertanejo music, a popular Brazilian genre. She was known for tackling feminist issues in her songs, such as denouncing men who control their partners, and calling for women's empowerment.

On Friday evening, the news triggered an outpouring of sadness on social media from all corners of Brazil, including from fans, politicians, musicians and football players. Her Instagram account has 38 million followers.

“I refuse to believe it, I just refuse,” Brazil football star Neymar, who was a friend of Mendonca’s, said on Twitter after the news broke. Brazil’s government also offered its condolences.

Her album Todos os Cantos won her the 2019 Latin Grammy for Best Sertanejo Music Album. She was nominated for the same award this year for her album Patroas.

Mendonca leaves behind a son who will turn 2 in December.

Updated: November 6th 2021, 8:39 AM