This article was published in 2012.
Back in April, Martin House Children's Hospice held their third, annual Centre Stage Heats at The Wardrobe, Leeds. Over a thousand people came down to support over thirty local, young bands and artists who battled it out to earn themselves a place at July's Final, where they will compete for a place on the bill at both the Leeds and Reading Festivals this summer.
The Final is now looming and very eagerly anticipated, and is set to take place on 17th July 2012 at O2 Academy, Leeds.
The event will see a diverse range of acts, from as young as twelve years old, and will be judged by a very high profile panel, including Neil Pengelly (Booker for Leeds and Reading), Mike Heaton (Embrace), Jeremy Lascelles (Former Virgin A&R Manager/ CEO Chrysalis Music), Ross Jarman (The Cribs) and Matt Bowman (Pigeon Detectives).
The evening will be hosted by BBC Introducing's Alan Raw, who will also be introducing the winners when they take to the stage at the Leeds Festival.
The lucky finalists are: The Scandal, Distorted Sky, PaperPlane, Traffic Wire, Indecisive Crisis, The Artists, Seas-of-Green, Inlaze, Another Life, Euthemia, British Daylight and Glassbody. All fine examples of young people utterly dedicated to performing music that they are so passionate about. The Mexanines, winners of Centre Stage 2011 will also be performing as special guests.
In order to enter, artists must be under 21 years old, with at least one band member at school or college in West Yorkshire. To put themselves forward for this fantastic opportunity, artists/bands committed to undertake their own fundraising ventures and raise vital funds for the hospice: to care for children and young adults, with life limiting illnesses. The perfect example of young people helping young people.
Since securing their place as finalists, the bands have been taking this opportunity very seriously - upping their rehearsal times, writing new material and getting lots of gigging practice. Not to mention continuing to fundraise and help raise the profile of the competition. As preparation for the final, Martin House has organised professional mentor sessions, to answer any last questions and to deliver some constructive advice for their big performance.
Last year's final saw over 1200 music fans support the bands and Martin House and this year looks set to attract an even bigger crowd!
Tickets available now on O2 Academy Leeds website, priced at only £6/£4 concessions. People are also welcome to pay on the door. Doors open and 6pm and the event will start at 6.50pm.
Fantastic prizes also awarded to 'the best fundraisers', 'the runners up' and 'the act to bring the most support'. Soundworks Studios and Choque Hosein have generously donated two of these! Decksaver and Blacks Solicitors are both sponsoring the event.
Festival Republic continue their dedicated support and once again are welcoming the winners to perform at both Leeds and Reading 2012.
The lucky winners will also receive £1000 worth of musical equipment from John Hornby Skewes and Co. Ltd, a performance music video by Shot by Sodium and also a graphic design consultation, with West Yorkshire company Define Creative, to work on their branding.
Come down to the O2 Academy on Tuesday and support Martin House Children's Hospice and these young Leeds bands.
View our event page for the Final.