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How Hobart Airport Cancelled A Surprise Coldplay Gig

Written by Greg Moskovitch on June 24, 2014

Tasmania’s premiere winter festival Dark Mofo recently played host to the likes of The Bronx, SUNN O))), Veil of Darkness, and many more alternative notables. But according to a new blog post from organiser David Walsh, they almost managed to nab one of the world’s biggest bands, Coldplay.

According to Walsh, the band contacted Dark Mofo boss Leigh Carmichael looking to play the Winter solstice event. “They wanted to play a surprise, free gig at Dark Mofo,” writes Walsh. “I was excited too. It looked like quite a coup. Apparently they wanted me to show them around when they came down for the gig, a problem because I was planning to be at a party in Austria at the time.”

“I quickly reorganised my schedule, leaving my friends in Europe in the lurch to get the gig,” he recounts. And get the gig he did. According to Walsh, everything was “signed and sealed” and ready to go ahead were it not for a major logistical issue that arose at Hobart International Airport.

Despite Mofo’s events team “trying every trick they could,” the facility wasn’t equipped to deal with the amount of freight that a band like Coldplay travel with. “A big act means big equipment travelling… from Tokyo. Hobart airport does not have the machinery to unload these pallets,” writes Walsh. “Coldplay transport their gear on a [Boeing] 767, and 767s can’t land at Hobart airport.”

But Carmichael wasn’t miffed, SMSing Walsh, “Didn’t need those Coldplay cunts after all.” An accurate assessment, 2014 was one of Mofo’s most successful instalments. “Perhaps next year our inability to get an Elton John or Mariah Carey gig over the line will save the festival,” adds Walsh.

Coldplay announced that they would play a one-off show at Sydney’s Enmore Theatre to promote their sixth studio album, Ghost Stories, back in May. In addition to the sold-out gig, they also found the time to take over Newtown’s famed King St to film their music video for Sky Full of Stars.

Watch: Coldplay – A Sky Full Of Stars

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