THEY started with a sold out gig at Old Town House and now unstoppable band Hollow Vandals are ‘Shooting for the Moon’.

The Warrington grunge four-piece say they are excited to be headlining a gig at the Parr Hall tonight, Wednesday, under the glow of the Museum of the Moon as part of the Contemporary Arts Festival.

Hollow Vandals formed in 2017 at Priestley College and are taking to the stage at the biggest venue in the town on Wednesday as the culmination of a whirlwind couple of years.

Their new song, Halfway to the Moon, which has had more than 2,500 plays on Spotify, even inspired the WAYV (Warrington Youth Voice) event which is using Luke Jerram’s visiting artwork as a jumping off point to encourage young music lovers to chase their dreams.

Guitarist Mischigan Taylor said: “Things have blown up since we’ve released that track. We’re getting noticed a bit more around Warrington.

“To play that in front of a sculpture of the Moon is a bit of a dream.

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“You spend your whole time in Warrington as a band thinking: ‘What’s next?’

“And Parr Hall is that next. It’s what you’re always going for in Warrington and now we’re finally doing it. It’s big. It’s a lot to take in.”

The main organiser of Shoot for the Moon which will feature around nine bands and artists at Parr Hall is Warrington Voluntary Action which has been a big supporter of Hollow Vandals.

Drummer Liam Fraser, who also manages the band, said: There are a lot of young bands playing and we’ve been described as role models

Mischigan, who attended Padgate Academy, added: “They’re kind of looking at it like passing the torch because we’re at university in Manchester now.

“They’re going to learn while putting on their first gig and it’s really great to be part of that opportunity.

“When we think about where we’ve come from and where we are now – about to play Parr Hall and headlining it – it’s such a big thing.”

Hollow Vandals formed at Priestley College when Liam, Mischigan, James Broad and Cian Brown bonded over Nirvana, Silverchair, Royal Blood, Placebo and Queens of the Stone Age.

Liam, 18, said: “There’s a really good music scene emerging in Warrington. When we started there wasn’t a lot going on but then a lot of bands started to come out of Priestley College.”

Mischigan, also 18, added: “When we started in 2017, we had to work for every gig and now there’s an established scene. There are new venues like Live Bar and places like The Lounge are hosting a lot of bands again.”

HOW THE GALACTIC OPPORTUNITY CAME ABOUT

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PROMISING musicians are often called ‘rising stars’ but Warrington bands will be taking that to another level when they perform next to a giant model of the Moon.

Around nine bands and artists are hosting their own gig on Wednesday at the Parr Hall as part of Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival when Luke Jerram’s Museum of the Moon will be glowing above them.

Shoot for the Moon is part of a Warrington Voluntary Action project called WAYV (Warrington Youth Voice) aimed at inspiring the next generation to pursue their dream careers.

Grunge four-piece Hollow Vandals are headlining the show with La Scala, Splinters Ensemble, Blue Flamez and other bands and singer-songwriters representing Beamont Collegiate Academy and Orford Youth Base.

Young people will also be working behind the scenes and at every part of the production from promoting the event to looking after front of house.

Stef Griffiths, from Warrington Voluntary Action, said: “How this came about is I support a youth culture board and with the Contemporary Arts Festival coming up we were given a slot for a takeover event.

“The reason we’ve called it Shoot for the Moon is that it really has an emphasis on aspiration.

“The whole point of this event is to give young people the opportunity to either perform or work behind the scenes at a concert in a professional setting. We want to give them an idea of what that’s like so they can see whether they’d like to pursue it as a career. They’ll be professionals on hand to make sure everything runs smoothly.

“But the young people will be shadowing them and working alongside them to do stage management, sound engineering, lighting, backstage management and front of house.

“They will be involved in every part of the production. They’ll also be using social media to report on it, do live streams of the performances and write up blogs on it afterwards so it really is an opportunity to have a taste of a lot of different careers.

“We really wanted to give young people the chance to stretch and challenge themselves in this sector where there are so many career opportunities.

“We want them to look at all the career prospects that they have and everything they could do.”

Shoot for the Moon is just one of many WAYV projects this year.

Stef, a former Lymm High School student, added: “The idea is to set up lots of different opportunities for young people, whether it’s volunteering in the community or getting involved with policy making in the town.

“It’s everything from health, wellbeing and social care all the way to culture with events like this.”

Around 50 young people will be involved with the Parr Hall gig which is also being supported by Culture Warrington, Plugged In and Higher Horizons.

Many of the teenagers targeted are disadvantaged and might not have the chance to be immersed in the arts otherwise.

The concert will also be presented by professional singer-songwriter Tricia McTeague, who has worked with the likes of Ronan Keating and Paul Van Dyk.

Stef, 32, from Grappenhall, said: “It’s such a huge opportunity for these young people. It’s going to be so beautiful with the backdrop of the Moon.

“To perform at an iconic music hall is special as it but to have it as part of this festival and have this internationally renowned art piece as well is absolutely huge. I think it’s going to be a fantastic event.

“We’re also hoping to do a Radio 1 Live Lounge kind of thing where each band will pick a song to cover that references space travel, the galaxy or the Moon so hopefully all the bands will get on board with that to celebrate the gig’s unique setting.”

Shoot for the Moon is at the Parr Hall on Wednesday from 7pm. Tickets are just £3 and all are welcome. Visit pyramidparrhall.com