The Tragic Death Of Haitian Singer Mikaben

Haitian singer and musician Mikaben was performing on stage at Accor Arena in Paris on October 15 when he collapsed in front of the audience, per Page Six. According to The Guardian, the 41-year-old may have had a heart attack or cardiac arrest while he was performing and fell while trying to make his way off the stage. The medics were called but sadly, Mikaben, whose given name is Michael Benjamin, died after the incident. 

The following day, Accor Arena announced in French on Twitter (via CNN), "Last night during the Carimi concert, one of the singers, Michael Benjamin, Mikaben, died after fainting on stage and despite the intervention of emergency services. The whole team at Accor Arena is terribly affected and sends all of its support to his family and loved ones during this painful time."

Mikaben's wife, Vanessa Benjamin, took to Instagram to share her grief, writing, "On mon Dieu, Heavenly Father, I know you don't make mistakes and you won't give us what we can't bare but...this pain is very heavy. Help me please oh merciful Lord." Her previous post read, "Thank you for the prayers but please stop calling me. I'm in no condition to talk. I lost my other half and I have no words." Fans and friends have since come forward on social media to share their condolences.

Haiti's prime minister and fellow singers pay tribute to Mikaben

The Prime Minister of Haiti, Ariel Henry, addressed Mikaben's death on Twitter. "I am devastated by the news of the sudden death of the young and very talented artist Michael Benjamin 'Mikaben.' It is a great reference of Haitian music which has just passed away. The country and the Haitian youth have lost a beautiful soul. I extend my condolences to his family, friends, and the music community as a whole," Henry wrote (via NY Post).

Haitian-born singer/songwriter Wyclef Jean also shared his devastation. "This is a shock," he told Miami Herald. Jean recalled jamming out with Mikaben in New York. "All I could remember was his smile. This is one of the most influential and inspirational young artists of our generation," he shared. Jean also shared a video of him and Mikaben together on Twitter and wrote, "Rest in Peace King @mikaben Gone too soon."

Fellow artist Roberto Martino told the Herald, "I'm in disbelief. This is somebody I was working with for years and considered a brother, a good friend. We talked almost every day. We have a chat together." It's clear that Mikaben was well-loved by many and will be missed. Mikaben is survived by his wife Vanessa Benjamin, who is pregnant with their third child, and his two children, Gabriel and Leia Benjamin.