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The Blue & Gray Press | July 21, 2018

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Staff Ed: Coldplay not overshadowed, shares stage

Staff Ed: Coldplay not overshadowed, shares stage


Although many viewers of the Super Bowl joked that Beyonce invited Bruno Mars and Coldplay to her halftime show, the truth of the matter is that behind the spectacular intermission was Coldplay’s careful planning and preparation for the highly anticipated event.

In the weeks leading up to the event, Chris Martin, the lead singer of the British band, appeared on several late night shows to promote the halftime show. Martin even went as far as to drop hints about his surprise guests on “The Late Late Show with James Cordon” during the fan favorite Carpool Karaoke segment, he and Cordon both agreed that they love Mars’ “Uptown Funk.”

As soon as the show began, social media exploded with tweets and statuses proclaiming that Coldplay had been upstaged at their own show. However, if Coldplay had wanted the focus to remain solely on them, it is unlikely that the Grammy award winning rock band would have invited superstars such as Beyonce or Mars.

Attention seeking has never been Coldplay’s modus operandi. From their understated stagewear to their music videos featuring, for the majority of the time, anyone but themselves, Coldplay does not distract from their music with gimmicky stage devices. This rang true even at the Super Bowl, where in year’s past there have been celebrities riding giant mechanical tigers or decidedly not family friendly wardrobe malfunctions.

With the help of Coldplay and accompanying acts, this halftime show put the spotlight on politics, particularly with the addition of Beyonce’s latest release, “Formation,” as well as Coldplay’s message at the end: believe in love, that was splashed across the stadium.

In fact, Coldplay, despite their recent album “A Head Full of Dreams,” they performed classics suchs as “Viva la Vida,” “Paradise,” “Clocks” and only one new song: “Adventure of a Lifetime.” Besides that one song, the only other self-promotional trick they used was the kaleidoscope motif that echoes their album art for “Dreams.”

As a band, Coldplay is more comfortable with creating scenes that highlight causes and situations besides themselves- something they accomplished this Super Bowl, even if people think that they were upstaged. Behind every show stopping number in the fifteen minute span was the work of a talented and humble band who did not set out to outshine or overpower their image.