Bands to battle it out for musical supremacy

The Mayor of Wigan, Councillor Myra Whiteside, centre, tries the guitar at the official opening of the 21:12 Music Community
The Mayor of Wigan, Councillor Myra Whiteside, centre, tries the guitar at the official opening of the 21:12 Music Community

MUSICIANS from across the borough are preparing to pick up their instruments and battle it out for prestigious prizes in a huge contest for unsigned acts.

21:12 Music Community, located on Swan Meadow Road, has launched its first-ever battle of the bands competition, with no fewer than 30 acts expected to take to the stage over six heats for a place in the final.

The ambitious competition will see up-and-coming groups showing off their musical prowess at a range of unusual venues including a supermarket, a karting circuit and a 10-pin bowling hall, as the organisers seek to take the borough’s artistic talents out into the community.

The battle of the bands will culminate with a grand final held at The Orwell pub at Wigan Pier, with the winners picking up a range of prizes including time in a recording studio in Manchester and £150 of equipment from Symphony Music.

Jayne West, who runs not-for-profit organisation 21:12 with partner Phill Knight, said: “We don’t do anything by halves and we wanted to do something different for the competition.

“There’s a lot of talent in Wigan at the moment, and we get enough bands passing through 21:12 to fill the line-ups, so we’re hoping to show off just how much music there is and the diversity and age range of the bands.

“We’re starting the whole contest at 21:12, which will also be the official launch night for our stage room, and we’re also just trying to get the judging panels organised.”

The competition begins on Saturday, June 8, with two events, before concluding on June 22 with the grand final at The Orwell. The heats will take place at 21:12, Wigan Youth Zone, Wigan’s Asda store, AMF Superbowl, Elite Karting and Wigan Roller Rink, with five acts in each event.

Bands who want to enter need to fill in an application form before the deadline on April 27. Entry forms are available from 21:12, Symphony Music’s store on Market Street, and from any of the competition venues.