The caterer accompanying British band Coldplay on its tour of America must have enough food and equipment to feed up to 300 crew members for some of its shows.
While the award-winning band led by frontman Chris Martin consists of just four members, the supporting cast behind the shows is huge – and UK catering specialists Eat to the Beat has the job of cooking for them all.
The company is keeping Coldplay and their crew fuelled during the band’s ‘A Head Full of Dreams’ tour of North America, which kicked off in New York last Saturday and wraps up in San Francisco on September 3, covering 22 gigs in total.
The ETTB team have already provided backstage catering services for the band’s 19 European concerts, which took in eight locations – France, Spain, Germany, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark and the UK – earlier this year.
Susanne Traynor, ETTB’s operations manager, who oversees support of the Coldplay gigs, has been coordinating the logistics of the mammoth tour from ETTB’s head office in Chesham, Buckinghamshire.
She was on site in four cities of the European tour – Nice, Manchester, London and Hamburg – and was in New Jersey as the US tour commenced.
“A Head Full of Dreams is a really great show and a big logistical challenge,” she said. “Coldplay have a large crew out on the road including the production team, vendor’s crews and drivers who all need to be fed at each location. In Europe we have been catering for around 180 crew at each show plus a further 50 people in the ‘band party’. In America the crew numbers are even bigger with ETTB catering for around 300 people at some of the venues.”
A typical day sees the ETTB team arrive on site at 6am to provide breakfast for the Coldplay crew. Fresh provisions are sourced in each city and dressing rooms are prepared for the band and support acts and are stocked with drinks and snacks.
ETTB cook and serve lunch and dinner for the entire crew and the artists, providing high quality restaurant-style menus to suit every palate including vegetarian, gluten-free and many other dietary requirements.
Traynor adds: “If the band is playing consecutive nights our team will rest up in a hotel. When the band moves on ETTB stock the Coldplay crew buses with drinks sandwiches and snacks as the tour heads to its next destination. We also load up our own truck with the help of local crew, shower and bed-down on the bus in readiness to do it all over again at the next stop.”
She admits a typical working day is “pretty full on” and rarely without a dull moment.
“Life on the road is hard but it is fun working alongside a great production, their crews and the artist. They all work really long hours in a high octane environment, so good food available throughout the day is vital to keep them refreshed and energised.”
Eat to the Beat also provides backstage catering support for international tours, major festivals such as Glastonbury and Reading, concert venues and TV and film locations. All divisions trade under the umbrella of Global Infusion Group.