Acoustic duo are set for the regional final

NEW BAND: Acoustic duo Rita Payne who comprise Pete Sowerby, of Belton, and Rhiannon Scott, of Owston Ferry. Picture: Steve Oatway

NEW BAND: Acoustic duo Rita Payne who comprise Pete Sowerby, of Belton, and Rhiannon Scott, of Owston Ferry. Picture: Steve Oatway

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Acoustic duo Rita Payne will take to the stage at Sheffield City Hall on Sunday after sailing through auditions at the same venue last month for the Live and Unsigned Competition.

The band, comprising Rhiannon Scott, of Epworth Road, Owston Ferry, and Pete Sowerby, of Sandtoft Road, Belton, was formed just eight months ago by the two ex-South Axholme pupils.

The pair - both aged 22 - had just two minutes to impress judges at the audition stage but have slightly longer to make their mark in the regional final.

Each act has three and a half minutes stage time and they must combine one of their own tracks with a well-known pop song.

“It will be like a medley and we’ve picked Avicii’s ‘Good Feeling’ to mix in with one of our songs,” explained Rhiannon.

“We’re trying to do something a bit different and hopefully it will go down well. We‘re looking forward to the gig.”

Rita Payne - the name originates as a combination of the Christian names of both members and their dads - were due to perform at the Milo Bar in Leeds on Tuesday night.

The band will play at The White Hart, Owston Ferry, on Saturday, April 7, and they have also been booked for Lincoln’s Cafe Portico on May 18 plus a folk festival near Harrogate in June.

“Things are coming along really well and we’re recording and building up quite a following and BBC Radio Sheffield have played us three times,” added Rhiannon.

“We are quite folky but it’s quite hard to put us in a single genre and we’re trying to do a few covers to keep the audience interested.”

The regional final will see a panel boasting representatives of rock magazine Kerrang! and festival promoters.

“Even if we don’t get through to the next round we might get signed up for a festival which would be good,” added Rhiannon.

If they succeed on Sunday, the next stage is a live area final in May followed by the grand final at London’s O2 Arena in July.

The winning act will pick up £10,000 in cash plus another £10,000 publicity package.

l Follow the band on Twitter @theritapayne or contact Rhiannon or Pete by e-mailing ritapayne2@gmail.com