Nairobi, Kenya (CNN) South African rapper Costa Teach died suddenly this weekend, hours after performing at a music festival, his family said on Instagram.
The musician, whose real name was Konstantinos Tsupanoglu, was 28 years old.
Footage circulating on social media appeared to show Tsubanoglu falling on stage before someone beside him lifted him up. Tsobanoglou then woke up for several seconds before apparently collapsing.
“It is with deep pain that we find ourselves having to acknowledge his death at this time,” Tsubanoglu’s family said in a post on his Instagram account. “We are grateful to those emergency responders and all those present in his final hours.”
The statement did not mention the cause of death.
The festival he was performing at, Ultra South Africa, said he was “devastated” by the young rapper’s death.
“Costa has been an influential voice on the South African amappiano scene – a talented rapper, dancer, singer-songwriter, collaborator and friend of the festival,” the statement read.
Tsobanoglou was a growing sensation in South Africa and one of its biggest stars Amapiano, a musical style characterized by logarithmic driven basslines and upbeat piano melodies. His rapping style combines indigenous South African culture, style, and languages with international rap subgenres such as trap music, which originated in Atlanta’s thriving hip-hop scene.
Born in Nelspruit in northeastern South Africa, Tsubanoglu had already had a successful dance career before becoming a rapper.
She made Tsobanoglou’s song “Big Flexa” a star across Africa after it became a hit on TikTok. The rapper had recently partnered with a music label started by Senegalese-American musician Akon, who was featured on a remix of “Big Flexa”.
Tsobanoglou’s death comes a month after his friend and collaborator, AKA the rapper, was killed in a shooting.
CNN’s Joshua Berlinger contributed to this report
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