Watching Coldplay live in spud valley amongst a crowd of 35,000 screaming fans at a proposed Pemberton music festival may only be a few government approvals away.
“It’s not cast in stone, but the main band or artist for the event will be Coldplay,” said Paul Selina, president of the Pemberton Chamber of Commerce. “We understand the manager for Coldplay had flown into Pemberton and looked around. He is very positive about the place and very excited to bring Coldplay to Pemberton.”
What makes the Coldplay concert even more exciting is that the Pemberton show will be one of only three live concerts launching their new album, set for release in the spring of 2008.
The tentative locations for the concerts include Japan, Europe and, possibly, Pemberton.
“Obviously, we are not there yet,” Selina said. “We have some work to do to make sure it kicks in with everything. We are very optimistic. The people of Pemberton would like to make it happen. It’s not just a boost for Pemberton and Whistler, but for B.C. in general. Coldplay has a massive cult following. To get Pemberton into Rolling Stone Magazine , that kind of publicity is difficult to buy.”
Shane Bourbonnais, president of touring and business development for Live Nation, the largest producer of concerts in the world, is heading the project.
The proposed music festival will take place over three days in the summer of 2008. Selina said the festival setup would operate like a mini village with amenities such as a drug store, grocery store, artist market and other local businesses in addition to festival staging for the concerts and possibly camping. Selina said he anticipates the festival will draw 55,000 people over the weekend, with 35,000 showing up for the Saturday night Coldplay concert.
Everything now hinges on the approval of various permits. Live Nation is also looking at other possible festival setups in Eastern Canada.
“Getting ready for the (Olympic) Games is a big thought behind it from the chamber and provincial point of view,” Selina said. “We need to get used to hosting that amount of people, and this is the perfect way to do it. We can test transportation, policing, security, the fire brigade and volunteerism and the business community. It’s a great opportunity for us to get ready for 2010.”