Coldplay Confirmed for First Global Citizen Festival in India
After rumors of astronomical ticket prices, Global Citizen announces the band's debut India show in Mumbai on Nov. 19 will be free.
Coldplay's long-awaited, much-rumored India performance debut is finally confirmed.
After several tabloid reports that led to inaccurate coverage about expensive ticket prices and which city would host Chris Martin and Co., international social action platform Global Citizen announced Friday (Sept. 9) it would set up in India on Nov. 19 in Mumbai.
Initial news touted that the festival's first India edition would include Jay Z, but there's no confirmation of that yet. What is confirmed is that tickets won't cost INR 25,000 ($375 in U.S. dollars, approximately) to 500,000 ($7,475) and will follow the festival's established format of providing tickets for free to fans based on signing up to become a part of Global Citizen and "taking actions in support of education, equality, and sanitation campaigns," according to an announcement made earlier Friday. More details about the festival -- which is also headed to Canada next week -- will be announced Monday at 4 p.m. India Standard Time.
Over the phone from New York, Global Citizen CEO Hugh Evans tells Billboard: "We were very fortunate a few years ago when Prime Minister Narendra Modi came onstage at the Global Citizen Festival in New York, and then after that, we brought Chris Martin from Coldplay to Delhi to meet with the prime minister about a year and a half ago and we started working intensively on bringing Global Citizen to India."
Indian artists slated to appear at the festival include actor Aamir Khan, Oscar-winning film composer A.R. Rahman, actor-singer Farhan Akhtar and more. "Our whole goal was to have 70 percent Indian artists -- we wanted to make sure that it was India first and India and the world," Evans adds. On the campaign front, Global Citizen is working with Indian organization the Global Education and Leadership Foundation, which mentions on its site that it "will host the festival in different cities in India every year for the next fifteen years as an annual accountability moment."
Coldplay's show in India was rumored to be in the works ever since Martin visited Delhi in July last year as part of his work with Global Citizen and even played an impromptu set at a club with Indian musicians such as film composer Vishal Dadlani and folk singer Raghu Dixit. Martin returned with the band in tow in September last year, when they shot the video for "Hymn for the Weekend" in Mumbai, featuring Beyoncé, directed by Ben Mor.
The date of the show will coincide with World Toilet Day and is reported to include guests ranging from Indian Prime Minister Modi to Bollywood actors such as Amitabh Bachchan hosting the event. Global Citizen Festival in Mumbai will be co-produced by communication and entertainment company Wizcraft, which has previously produced Michael Jackson's India debut in 1996 and co-produced Swedish rock band Europe's tour of the country in 1994.
Billboard has reached out to a rep for Coldplay for confirmation and further comment.