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Tributes paid to acrobat, 'beautiful inside and out'

Pedro Monroy died while performing at a festival in Madrid Credit: Pedro Aunion Monroy/Facebook

Tributes have been paid to a British-based acrobat who fell to his death at a Spanish rock festival.

Aerial dancer Pedro Aunion Monroy plunged 100ft in front of thousands of horrified music fans at the Mad Cool event in Madrid.

Paramedics attempted to save the 42-year-old, but he died at the scene.

Paramedics fought to save him but he died at the scene Credit: European Photopress Agency

On Saturday a family member said Mr Monroy had been "doing what he liked most, a show at Mad Cool", adding: "We're devastated."

Meanwhile heartbroken friends paid tribute to the "beautiful person inside and out" whose "energy, humour, altruism and smile will be missed by so many".

Credit: Pedro Aunion Monroy/Facebook

Mr Monroy from Portslade in Sussex, trained in the schools of Pilar López, Cristina Rota and in the Royal Conservatory of Dance, and had his own performance company, In Fact Aerial Dance, based in Brixton, London.

He also worked as a self-employed massage therapist at The Grand Hotel, Brighton.

The hotel's general manager Andrew Mosley said: "We are all very sad to hear the news, it is the most terrible news and our hearts go out to his friends and family."

Just a few days before the festival, Mr Monroy posted a picture and a last message on Facebook of himself and his partner which said "love, come to my arms".

Credit: Facebook

The festival organisers did not initially inform the audience or the bands the fall was fatal because of "security reasons" and around 40 minutes after, Green Day took to the stage for their set.

Tweeting after their performance Green Day said: "We just got off stage at Mad Cool Festival to disturbing news. A very brave artist named Pedro lost his life tonight in a tragic accident. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends."

Protesters gathered outside the festival after the show went on despite Mr Monroy's death Credit Credit: AP

Organisers of the Mad Cool festival defended their decision to carry on with the first performance, citing "mandatory" security measures.

A statement said: "In this situation it was officially deemed unsafe to have a large mass of people moving all at once, with the possibility of violent reactions, due to a sudden cancellation of an event of 45,000 people."

They said the three-day event would go on as scheduled to "pay tribute to all the artists that work everyday showing their talent in front of admiring and appreciative audiences.

"Pedro was a person totally committed to art, he deserves all our respect and admiration and we strive to ensure this."

It is unclear at this stage what happened with Mr Monroy's equipment which caused him to fall.

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