Coldplay tour shatters Latin American records
Coldplay’s Music Of The Spheres world tour has been declared the “most spectacular run through Latin America ever” after shattering a catalogue of records in the territory.
The region is proving especially fertile ground for the British group’s first tour in five years, with 37 shows confirmed so far.
Costa Rica – where the band became the first artist to sell out two nights at Estadio Nacional – marked the starting point in March, prior to a stop in the Dominican Republic. A record-breaking visit to Mexico then followed, which saw them crowned as the first international act to play four sold-out concerts at Foro Sol in Mexico City and the only act to sell out two nights at Estadio BBVA in Monterrey, as well as Estadio Akron in Guadalajara.
“Our expectations were high, but it has surpassed any expectations”
“It’s the most spectacular run through Latin America ever,” Live Nation LA president Bruce Moran tells IQ. “Our expectations were high and we were aggressive in terms of the routing, but it has surpassed any expectations. It’s truly remarkable. The band is a juggernaut, a true powerhouse and we’re really excited to be involved.”
On the heels of May-June shows in the US, the stadium trek switches to Europe next month, beginning with three dates at Deutsche Bank Park in Frankfurt, Germany. More than 3.8 million tickets have already been sold for the tour, which currently comprises 73 dates worldwide.
“We had no doubt it was going to be massive, but to be able to pull off what they’ve done is a very unique thing that would be tough to beat,” says the band’s agent Josh Javor of X-ray Touring. “We’ve broken a bunch of records already and we start in Europe next month. Europe is completely sold out and now Latin America – at the end of our year – is already sold out as well.
“It’s not very easy to define a specific window of how long this tour will run. There are lots more places they still want to play, so we will continue as long as they want to. It’s such a groundbreaking tour in such a challenging market. A lot of other things in the world are just not selling at the moment, but it’s completely bucked the trend.”
Records have continued to tumble for the South American stretch, which begins in September in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The band have racked up an unprecedented 10 sold-out concerts at Estadio River Plate in Buenos Aires, Argentina, six at Allianz Park in São Paulo, Brazil and four at Estadio Nacional in Santiago, Chile.
“What Coldplay have done in Latin America is unheard of”
In addition, Coldplay are the first Anglo artist to have two sold-out back-to-back dates at Lima’s Estadio Nacional in Peru and have tied Guns N’ Roses by filling Estadio El Campin twice over in Bogota, Colombia.
“What Coldplay have done in Latin America is unheard of,” beams Javor. “They haven’t just broken a record in one territory, they’ve done it in close to every market.”
Moran attempts to put the band’s achievements into perspective.
“In the not too distant past – let’s say 10 years ago – a Latin American tour might have been five or six dates,” he asserts. “We’ve worked hard to expand the map to entice people to try different locations, so it’s not uncommon for artists come to Latin America now and play eight, nine or 10 shows. But when you start talking about 37 shows, it’s remarkable by any yardstick. It’s truly astonishing.”
According to the executive, Coldplay’s 2016/17 A Head Full Of Dreams global jaunt, which was bookended by stops in Latin America, helped pave the way for the current blockbuster run.
“The work they did on their previous tours laid the groundwork for the monumental success we’re experiencing today”
“The band came down in 2016 and we had nine shows throughout the region,” remembers Moran. “Following the successful play of those shows, I continued to lobby [then agent] Steve Strange and Josh Javor that the band ought to come back. I was told repeatedly that they were done with Latin America and had other territories to hit. But I guess I planted a seed that they grew into something special and I got a call back saying, ‘We’re going to conclude the tour in Latin America.’ So they came back in 2017 and played another seven shows.
“I think the work they did in the region then – and on their previous [Viva la Vida] tour in 2010 – laid the groundwork for the monumental success we’re experiencing today.”
Javor refers back to the 2016 stop-off, when the band played a trio of concerts at Foro Sol.
“A lot of acts might only play Mexico City and not go to the regions”
“It was very, very strong. But when we went last time, we didn’t do any shows regionally,” he explains. “It’s quite common for people in Mexico to travel, because a lot of acts might only play Mexico City and not go to the regions. But not only have we done more tickets in Mexico City alone, we added two other cities and played four shows in those as well – that’s how insane this is compared to what we did last time.”
Having previously put touring plans on hold to investigate how to make their concerts more sustainable, the announcement of Coldplay’s return to the road came hand-in-hand with a 12-point plan to reduce the environmental impact of the tour. Earlier this year, the group launched a free app for fans as part of their pledge to make the run as eco-friendly as possible.
“They are managing to add more elements to the tour as it progresses, from having water stations in the stadium to small wind turbines as part of the production,” notes Javor. “They’re also trying to cut down on flying gear around the world to make it much more sustainable and are trying to source things more locally.”
“Coldplay’s tour is the first to have a dedicated Green Nation sustainability tour representative”
Jared Braverman, SVP touring at Live Nation, spoke of his pride at what has been accomplished up to this point, working hand-in-hand with LN’s global sustainability coalition, Green Nation.
“We’re incredibly proud to be promoting Coldplay’s Music Of The Spheres 2022 world tour,” he says, speaking to IQ. “Together with Green Nation, Coldplay has become a special artist advisor, ensuring the sustainable practices developed on this tour are shared, adopted, and scaled through the rest of the live touring industry.
“The tour is also accompanied by a comprehensive set of sustainability initiatives, including commitments to a show powered by renewable energy, solar panels at every show, a pledge to cut tour emissions by 50%, and more. We’re excited to share that Coldplay’s tour is the first to have a dedicated Green Nation sustainability tour representative, supporting implementation of joint sustainability priorities along every stop while on the road, and working with venues to enhance local sustainability efforts.”
In closing, Braverman praises the group’s new Infinity Tickets initiative, which gives fans access to select dates for just $20 per ticket.
“The new ticket programme was launched to make tickets to Coldplay’s latest stadium shows accessible to more fans who want to see the band live in concert for an affordable price,” he says.
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