Viva La Vida Tour


Poster for Summer Sonic 2008 – Coldplay headlining

The Viva la Vida Tour (Also Known As The Viva La Vida World Tour) is Coldplay’s third major concert tour and spans from 2008 to 2010. This tour supports their fourth studio album Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends. The tour has been a massive commercial and critical success, taking in some of the largest venues in the world, often with double or triple nights in select markets.

The tour was believed to have ended on September 19, 2009, following two back-to-back homecoming concerts at Wembley Stadium in London, but on October 1, 2009, one final leg of the Viva La Vida Tour was announced, consisting of seven shows in Latin America in February and March, 2010.


  • 21 The Oracle on the Viva La Vida Tour

About the tour

The stage setup consisted of a stripped down main stage and two catwalks; Coldplay also performed amongst audience members at the back of venues in a special acoustic set. Instead of a giant video screen on-stage, the band opted for six hanging giant lightbulbs that displayed images and closeups. Lead singer Chris Martin dubbed the fixtures as “magic balls”, while drummer Will Champion added that they release confetti butterflies.

Coldplay were accompanied by Oxfam and David Gibbin during the tour. Volunteers were stationed at each venue to tell concertgoers how to reduce poverty; the organization’s logo and website was featured on one of the light ball fixtures during each concert.

On July 23, 2008 Coldplay performed their second in two shows at the United Center arena in Chicago. In each of the two shows, the band shot the music video for “Lost!” by performing the song twice (as they did with the “Fix You” video). On September 19, 2008, Chris Martin was accompanied by A-Ha pianist Magne Furuholmen in the encore at the Oslo Spektrum, Oslo, to play a cover of the A-Ha song “Hunting High and Low”.

Their Tampa show, scheduled for August 9, 2009 was delayed because of medical reasons. Later, it was cancelled.

Background to the Viva La Vida tour

Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida” world tour — which will land in North America, Europe and Japan — is set to begin at Philadelphia’s Wachovia Center on June 29 2008 and extend well into next year, can reveal.

Save for the Pemberton Festival in Vancouver on July 27 2008, Coldplay will play arenas in North America, the U.K. and Europe on the tour’s first leg. Some North American dates will go on sale May 16-17 2008, but the majority go up June 14 2008, the weekend before “Viva La Vida” is released. Ticket info will be available at

As previously reported, Coldplay will play free concerts in London (June 16 at the Brixton Academy) and New York (June 23 at Madison Square Garden). Information on how to win tickets to these shows will be available at the band’s website beginning today (May 9). The contest runs through June 1 2008 and winners will receive notification on June 5. Roughly 50 shows are planned for North America, followed by Europe and the U.K. Coldplay will also headline the Summer Sonic festival Aug. 9-10 2008 in Tokyo and Osaka, Japan. About 90 dates total are expected for this year. More shows are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. “Last time we ended up doing 150 shows; we’ll probably end up roughly the same,” Coldplay manager Dave Holmes tells

Live Nation will promote shows in Europe and North America, with U.K. dates promoted by SJM. Lighting and set design for the tour are by Paul Normandale and features “lots of projection,” Dave Holmes says. “It will really blow people away.”

Ticket prices are still being determined, but a three-tiered pricing strategy is likely, with prices roughly in the $50, $65 and $85 range. “You’re not going to see us coming out with $125-$150 tickets,” Holmes says.


  • Viva La Vida Tour 2008: Oxfam America Blog

UK Dates Unearthed

The Liverpool Echo has let slip Coldplay’s itinery for their UK leg of the Viva La Vida tour, despite this part of the schedule not yet being unveiled by the official site.

They have announced that Coldplay will perform at the new Liverpool Echo Arena in the run-up to Christmas (December 10). The waterfront venue sales manager Ian Congdon said it was thrilling to sign such a massive act. He said: “The fact we are able to secure this level of act within four months of opening the Echo Arena as a new venue is, without doubt, a phenomenal success.”

Besides the Liverpool gig, Coldplay have announced plans to play Birmingham, Manchester, Glasgow and London as part of their 12-date tour. The date for tickets to go on sale has not yet been released.

Update: 3rd October 2008 14:25 GMT
Anchorman has confirmed changes to the Uk tour schedule. Discussion can be found here:

Here are the confirmed UK dates for Coldplay’s “Viva La Vida” Tour:

  • 22 December 2008: 02 Arena, Dublin, Ireland

Summer Festival 2008, Quebec

Coldplay will be performing on the opening day at the outdoor Summer Festival in Quebec on 3rd July 2008, according to French media. Coldplay are rumoured to be playing at the Plains of Abraham which is the biggest of the open field venues. Other bands playing include Linkin Park and Yes.

For those who speak French:

La formation britannique Coldplay donnerait un spectacle en ouverture du Festival d’été de Québec, le 3 juillet prochain, selon une information rapportée par le réseau TVA lundi soir. Le spectacle aura lieu sur les Plaines d’Abraham. Les détails du contrat seraient finalisés d’ici peu, toujours selon TVA. Le Festival d’été doit confirmer la nouvelle dans quelques jours. Coldplay fera la promotion de son quatrième album studio, un opus intitulé «Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends», dont la sortie est attendue le 17 juin prochain en Amérique du Nord. Ce titre est un hommage à la peintre mexicaine Frida Kahlo. Produit par Brian Eno, cet album succèdera à «X&Y» paru en 2005.

13th Annual Summer Concert Series (2008)

The Today show has announced the lineup for the 13th annual Summer Concert Series, let’s just say there’s a promise of a new day (okay, we’ll stop).

Headliners include Miley Cyrus, Mary J Blige, Chris Brown, Alanis Morissette, Ashlee Simpson (sans lip sync hoe down, we’re sure), Kenny Chesney and Coldplay. The summer series kicks off a couple months early with a “special comeback performance” by American Idol’s Paula Abdul on Friday, April 25.

Coldplay will play on the 27th June.

More on the 13th Annual Summer Concert Series at

Pemberton Festival 2008, Canada

On 13th March 2008 it was revealed that Coldplay, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Jay-Z and Nine Inch Nails will headline the first-ever Pemberton Festival, set for July 25-27 in Pemberton, B.C.

The festival is produced by Live Nation and Good Boy Productions. Live Nation Canada CEO Shane Bourbonnais will spearhead LN’s efforts on the event. Good Boy Productions is a joint venture between Coldplay manager Dave Holmes and Depeche Mode manager Jonathan Kessler.

Coldplay will play on the 27th July.

More on the Pemberton festival at

Summer Sonic 2008, Japan

Coldplay will be performing at Summer Sonic, their official MySpace has confirmed. The dates are as follows:

  • August 9th, Osaka, Maishima

  • August 10th, Tokyo, Marine Stadium

On sale information coming soon. More on the Summer Sonic festival at

Unfounded Tour Dates

New images of Coldplay’s new website have surfaced via their official web designers, In them, are confirmation that the album title has already been announced, as well a forthcoming signed Lithograph competition.

The screenshots also give a clue to three new concert dates for the UK as 25th June at London’s Wembley Arena, 26th June in Birmingham and 29th June at the Apollo in Manchester.

However these dates appear unsubstantiated as they clash with other artists performing at the venues.

Opening acts

  • Bat For Lashes (Latin America 2010)

The Oracle on the Viva La Vida Tour

August 22, 2012 – submitted by Kristin, United States of America

Q. Hey Oracle. 🙂

Are the sparklers that the boys used on their Viva La Vida tour normal sparklers? Uh, well how did they swing them around so easily I mean?

One of the most perfect moments ever. 🙂

Thanks so much.

The Oracle replies:

They’re pretty standard and to be honest, every sparkler I have on Bonfire Night / New Year’s Eve are swung around with the same great force and withstand it so maybe you’ve got to find a better sparkler provider…

November 12, 2010 – submitted by Thibault, France

Q. Hi wise Oracle!

Refering to the question of the VLV tour program, is this one a real one?

Thanks for your advices!

The Oracle replies:

Yes it is but it’s worth noting there was a second run and the cover of that was slightly different as it also featured the puppets.

November 9, 2010 – submitted by Jeewee, Netherlands

Q. Dear Oracle,

I was over at a friend’s today and we both share the fact that we like Coldplay very much. When I was sitting down in his room, he had a book of Coldplay. I reached out to it and saw some really awesome pictures. It contained all the artwork on Viva and a lot of studio pictures and even pictures taken during the recording of the videos for Violet Hill. In the middle was a blueprint of the stage I believe! My friend didn’t know where he got it from, do you have any idea where I can buy this awesome book? Thanks Oracle!

The Oracle replies:

I knew what you meant right away; the tour programme from Viva la Vida. I found some images of it to save me scanning mine (thanks Coldplaying!)

The tour programmes were obviously sold on tour but you can still find some for sale on auction sites and such…

August 20, 2010 – submitted by Luis, Mexico

Q. Olaa gran y poderoso Oraculo!

Well maybe this is a stupid question but I can’t remember when and where was the first show of the Viva la Vida tour so can you tell me?
Thanks and sorry for my bad English.

Atentamente Luis

The Oracle replies:

It’s not a stupid question at all; it was a long time ago! Even though I know when and where it was, I still feel the need to account for the live shows preceding the tour.

On June 13 2008 the band performed for friends & family at Wembley. This was followed by free/TV shows on 16th in Brixton, 17th Barcelona, 18th BBC Television Centre, 19th Paris and 23rd & 27th New York.

The first live date of the tour proper was July 14th at The Forum, Los Angeles.

June 28, 2010 – submitted by Jonathan, United States of America

Q. While Yellow was played during the Viva La Vida tour, giant yellow balls were released into the crowd. When the song was over, the yellow balls seemed to disappear. I would have thought that the crowd would have kept the balls bouncing. How is it that the yellow balls disappeared almost on cue?

The Oracle replies:

For those who didn’t know, the yellow balls were actually balloons. They were initially bounced around the arenas/stadiums during the song. Although some were saved (or bravely attempted to be by some) most were popped to release their confetti. A couple made it back to the stage where Chris would pop them with his guitar on the final note.

April 22, 2010 – submitted by Christine, United States of America

Q. I am DYING to know, dearest Oracle, who the Table Tennis Champ of the Latin American Tour is?? Natasha or Chris (or was there a random underdog who blew them both out of the water)?? While I love Chris to pieces I’m a bit competitive myself so I’m pulling for the girl power and hope Natasha ran the tables 🙂

MUCHOS GRACIAS to the boys and crew for a killer finale in Monterrey – glad to know we were the loudest!

The Oracle replies:

The table tennis table saw many competitors come and go including Chris, Will, Phil, Chris’s Dad & sister (the Martins are VERY competitive); Kelly (security), Dan (trainer), Dan (sound), Natasha, Charlotte (Bat for Lashes) and even I had a go.

Chris likes to play to relax him before a show but don’t be fooled into thinking he’s not playing to win and win he did – over and over. Natasha was pretty good (as was Charlotte) but she didn’t beat Chris. Don’t get me wrong he got whipped a few times but overall Chris played the most and therefore is the tour ping-pong champion.

March 1, 2010 – submitted by Lia, Canada

Q. Hi!

As you most likely know, there was a massive earthquake off of Chile on Friday. I was just wondering if this has affected the band or the tour.

The Oracle replies:

We were all sad and shocked to awake to news of the earthquake whilst in Buenos Aires. Geographically we were far enough away that it didn’t directly affect us but it did mean that there was no soundcheck at last night’s Rio show as much of the equipment was being flown in from Chile and due to the airport being closed it couldn’t get to us on time. That said we’re of course all far more concerned for the people of Chile.

March 1, 2010 – submitted by Andres, Colombia

Q. Hello!!!!

Hope you are having a great time in Latin America. I just saw the setlist of Buenos Aires and I’m wondering, is it going to be the same in Bogota? We’d love you to play Trouble and Amsterdam, we love that songs… ahh and shiver???

Could you make a longer setlist?? Hahahaha….

Bye everyone, we love you all and we wait for you.

The Oracle replies:

We are all having a great time here! It’s shame it’s raining in Rio but that didn’t dampen spirits at last night’s show. It was only the second gig of this tour but it was possibly the best Coldplay concert I have ever seen; an opinion shared by many of our entourage in fact!
The crowd were absolutely incredible and it will be interesting to see if they can be matched for the remaining dates.

Anyway, to your question… to my shock and amazement (even though I’d heard the guys rehearsing it earlier in the day) Shiver was in the set at Rio. It was amazing so there’s more than a chance you’ll be hearing that Andres but I wouldn’t expect Trouble or Amsterdam. Someone asked Chris by the pool if they’d play Amsterdam in Buenos Aires – a popular request it seems.

February 15, 2010 – submitted by Karina, Uruguay

Q. Dear Oracle,

Will there be a live photoblog on Latin American tour?

thank you!

The Oracle replies:

There won’t be a live photoblog but there will be photos and news from the tour. Keep an eye on our Anchorman over the next few days as he will be telling you something else that you may find interesting…

January 15, 2010 – submitted by Ximena, Peru

Q. If Coldplay have auctioned their clothes of Viva la Vida Tour. What clothes, they’ll use in Latin America Tour?

The Oracle replies:

There was an agreement that the clothes (and instruments) would be sent out to the winning bidders after the Latin American tour dates so this won’t cause a problem.

September 28, 2009 – submitted by Emily, United States of America
Q. Oracle,

On one of the Roadie #42 blogs they mentioned a joke about how a Simon Cowell picture would appear during the song Yellow. He said that he didn’t want to spoil the joke because he didn’t want to ruin it for the next concerts. Well now that the Viva tour is over, What was the joke? from, Emily=)

The Oracle replies:

Ah yes, well what happened was after everyone was singing along to Yellow, Chris asked a pre-recorded Simon Cowell (from one of the X Factor shows)what he thought of the audience and he didn’t give a favourable response. Chris then said they should try again to impress the judge and began to play the end of Yellow again. As it finished he said “What did you think about that Simon?” to which he replied: “That was bloody fantastic”.

I guess you had to be there!

September 18, 2009 – submitted by Simone, Germany

Q. Hi clever Oracle!

My question refers to the crew. are all of them British or are they composed of different nations?

Love, S.

The Oracle replies:

The crew is international. Obviously there are many British crew members but a tour of this size requires so many people, they’re from all over.

September 7, 2009 – submitted by Lucas, Spain

Q. So…Oracle…What happens to the rest of the Coldplay crew after the tour is over? (You know, everyone else besides be actual 4 members)?

The Oracle replies:

The majority start by taking a well-earned break but depending on the length of the break in between, some work on other projects/ with other bands.

August 24, 2009 – submitted by Sophia, Spain

Q. Hullo there!

I’ve never been to a Coldplay concert, so I was wondering what happens to those yellow balls they let loose on the crowd? Do people keep them or do the band/crew take them back?

The Oracle replies:

I have seen various things happen to the yellow balloons; the majority are popped (they have confetti inside). Some people fight over ownership (ugly!) and some do make it outside. I’d love to see someone try and get one in the boot of their car! Some make their way to Chris and he pops them with his guitar.

The point is to bounce them around from person to person and then pop them! They’re certainly not meant to end up back with the crew.

August 20, 2009 – submitted by Marissa, Australia

Q. Are the boys and the crew looking forward to or dreading the end of the Viva La Vida tour in less than a month?

The Oracle replies:

I wouldn’t use the word dread to describe how they’re feeling; the guys love playing live but it’s always rather nice for everyone to return to their normal everyday life after being on the road for such an incredible length of time. That said, it was once described to me as… “From following a schedule of being told where to be, where to go and when to do it and suddenly arriving home free to do anything you like is strange and takes some adjusting to”.

They are all definitely ready for a well deserved break.

June 22, 2009 – submitted by Andrew, United States of America

Q. Oh ever-knowing Oracle,

Is it true Coldplay are releasing a Viva La Vida Tour DVD? I heard Chris was talking about it then I heard that Coldplay’s Video Manager said that the filming in Vancouver was “for the archive.”

Oh please answer, Oracle.


The Oracle replies:

It’s usual to document the live shows for archive but there are no further plans for the footage as yet.

June 18, 2009 – submitted by Matt, United States of America

Q. At the Quest Center show, there seemed to be a very long delay between supporting act Snow Patrol and Coldplay. It lasted at least 45 minutes and included a stagehand breakdancing to Jay-Z and the blaring of a quirky orchestral piece. Does this happen before every show, or was there just some technical difficulties? If this is a common occurrence, what is the title of the orchestra piece?

The Oracle replies:

That’s around the standard time between the support and main act. There are a few changes that need to be made between the two. Backdrops, lights and instruments need to be in place and checked before the main show. Also the opening act’s gear needs to be removed. It gives time for everything to be ready plus the crowd can use the facilities!

June 4, 2009 – submitted by Andrew, United States of America

Q. Oh wise Oracle,

I just went to the Darien Center concert yesterday and it was by far the best concert I have ever been to in my life. I was wondering though, how come Chris played The Hardest Part acoustically? Hope you answer!

P.S. – When the band came and played in the back area of the crowd it was amazing I could have reached out and touched them!

The Oracle replies:

This started back on Saturday 30 August 2008 when Coldplay performed an intimate live concert for BBC Radio 2. Chris announced that they were playing it that way as the band were divided on their opinion of the song. Two members like it; two don’t so he and Will performed it acoustically. It then became a part of the live show and proves to be a popular version.

June 1, 2009 – submitted by Syrus, United States of America

Q. Dear Oracle,

The Roadie often menitons a C stage and B stage.

What are they?

Thanks!! =]

The Oracle replies:

The current live show consists of the main stage, Stage A if you will and there are two runways that protrude at either side. From the runway at stage left, another stage appears during the show, known as Stage B. Stage C is actually a small area set aside for an acoustic performance and is within the audience, which brings the people at the back closer to the action.

June 1, 2009 – submitted by Beth, United States of America

Q. Dearest Oracle,

I feel stupid asking this question, but for the life of me I cannot remember the name of the classical song that was played right before Coldplay came on stage. The people sitting in front of me had seen Coldplay before, and they said that the song was played every time. I am desperately searching my brain for this song, but it’s not working!

It came right before Life in Technicolor.

Please help!

The show starts right after Johann Strauss’ The Blue Danube.

March 31, 2009 – submitted by Leonidas, Greece

Q. Dear Oracle,

I hope the question isn’t that big and answer me.

I wanna know why Coldplay never came here in Greece as in the Europe Tour..?

And the second question…I split up,with my girlfriend yesterday..after 1 year and 1 month relationship…but i still need her, I still love her..the problem is that we fighting for a lot..and maybe we lost the magic..:( what should I do..?

Give to the boys a big hug..from me..and Greece of course.

Sorry for the big..question

Kisses 😀

The Oracle replies:

It’s just one of those places that is rarely on any band’s tour schedule but that doesn’t mean never. Never say never…

As for your other question, all I can say is right now you are hurting but try to think through your feelings because I would hope that you don’t “need” her, you want her and that’s different. It only happened yesterday so you’re bound to feel incredibly sad. If you were fighting a lot, time apart sounds like it might be a good idea. Breaking up with someone you still love is so painful but remember this and hopefully in time you will believe it; if someone doesn’t want to be with you for whatever their reason, you really are better off without them. Have faith in yourself, you will find love again with someone deserving of your love. Just give yourself plenty of time to heal from the hurt.

March 23, 2009 – submitted by Rudolf, Slovakia

Q. Hi dear Oracle,

I always believed and I still do, that guys are playing everything live…but from current tour I have seen many performances and I really liked it! :o) BUT, in songs like Viva la vida or Lovers in Japan there are some parts (strings in VLV or the sound I cannot describe in LIJ) – and those parts sound always the same, as if they were pre-prepared and recorded (and of course I can’t see who should be playing those parts), do you know what I mean?

I can’t wait for your answer…


The Oracle replies:

I do know what you mean. The guys are playing their parts live and as you can probably work out, they aren’t able to play every single sound we hear on the album as there’s rather a lot going on. It’s usual to have pre-recorded parts in these circumstances. There have been occasions where live music was played off stage. For example, Matt McGinn used to play Chris’ guitar part in Yellow during one tour, as Chris decided he wanted to run around the stage more.

January 7, 2009 – submitted by Jason, United Kingdom

Q. I saw Coldplay in Birmingham on December 6th and during the concert Chris played a beautiful piece of classical music. It was piece I recognised but do not know the name of…….what was it? I would love to know cheers. Jason

The Oracle replies:

There were actually two classical/instrumental piano pieces played. One was after the stage b set and was an original composition Postcards From Far Away that is on Prospekt’s March. As you say you recognised it, chances are that it was the equally beautiful yet haunting piece Chris plays at the end of Politik. It’s the sublime Gnossienne No. 1 by Erik Satie.

December 19, 2008 – submitted by from Frederika and Nils, Germany

Q. Where do the Coldplay Crew get all the butterfly-confetti from?

Perhaps from a butterfly pooping pony out of Katy’s world, like in the movie Horton Hears a Who?

The Oracle replies:

A company based in Illinois called Strictly FX who also provide the 30+ blowers that shower us with the butterflies during the show! It’s the biggest confetti drop anywhere.

December 19, 2008 – submitted by Alistair, United Kingdom

Q. What was the classical piece of music played in the warm up before Coldplay came on stage at the O2 concert 16.12.08.

The Oracle replies:

The Blue Danube by Strauss comes straight after Jay-Z – I Just Wanna Love U (Give It 2 Me) that indicates it’s showtime.

September 29, 2008 – submitted by Stefanie, Austria

Q. Dear Oracle!

First of all I want to say thank you for answering all the questions! I really enjoy reading your answers to all those questions whether they’re Coldplay related or not. Now my question:

I went to the concert in Vienna last Wednesday(which was absolutely amazing!!) and at some point of the show the guys came to the back of the hall to a small space between the crowd and they were performing two songs there(I was standing right in front of them *smile*) Now I was wondering whether they are doing this on every concert or just sometimes?

The Oracle replies:

They call this segment of the show the acoustic section on Stage C and yes, it happens at every gig.

August 13, 2008 – submitted by Denis, Czech Republic

Q. Being the first time Coldplay will be touring Eastern Europe, can we expect some special setlist with older hits or some kind of surprise?

The Oracle replies:

I want it to be a surprise rather than tell you. To some extent it will be very similar to what they have been playing so far. The set list is always subject to change and they do prepare a number of songs to drop in from time to time. That said, they also decide to do impromptu versions along the way too. There’ll be many from the new album of course too as well as old favourites.

August 13, 2008 – submitted by Jessica, Canada

Q. Do the guys bring a private chef with them when they are on tour?

The Oracle replies:

The band have a catering company on the road with them (as do most touring bands). They’re called Eat to the Beat and are absolutely amazing. They create different menus every day and provide breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks and snacks for the entire crew as well as lay on any dressing room fodder and cater for after shows if needs be. Heidi is the wonderful lady who leads the team.

August 8, 2008 – submitted by sian, United States of America

Q. Does the band have a fitness professional/personal trainer on the tour?

The Oracle replies: