VIDEO: HomeTown invasion
THE Sunday World has made a dream come true for HomeTown fan Hannah Martin.
We teamed up with Louis Walsh’s new boyband this week to give Hannah the thrill of a lifetime, when the hot young pop idols gave an exclusive performance in her family home.
Hannah, a transition year student at the Convent of Mercy in Navan, Co. Meath, was the winner of our HomeTown competition – and the money can’t buy prize for the band to sing in her house.
HomeTown and Hannah
With stunning harmonies and a diverse set of songs that included their new single, Cry For Help, HomeTown displayed real star quality as they sang for Hannah and her family and friends.
There was huge excitement as the HomeTown stars arrived at 15-year-old Hannah’s lovely redbrick home in Navan on Thursday afternoon.
Wide-eyed with excitement, but controlling her emotions, Hannah exclaimed: “Oh my god, this is crazy!”
The pop pin-ups were welcomed by Hannah’s parents Gary and Joanne, who had created a party atmosphere with home-cooked food and goodies for friends who were invited to share the unique experience.
Then you could hear a pin drop as HomeTown launched into a string of songs, including Eye of the Tiger, Where I Belong and Cry For Help. And they finished the set with a rousing number called Streets of Galway.
After presenting Hannah with the first copy of their new single, HomeTown posed for pictures with guests, and signed autographs for their fans in the room.
“We’ve performed on the Late Late Show and at Childline, but to sing in a fan’s living room is very special,” Brendan Murray acknowledged.
Dean Gibbons agreed: “We like to meet our fans and get to know them. This is our first time to do something like this, and it has been great fun.”
Band member Josh Gray recognised Hannah as one of the fans who is constantly promoting HomeTown on Twitter.
“We wouldn’t be where we are today if it wasn’t for fans like Hannah,” he said.
Hannah told the Sunday World that she discovered HomeTown on YouTube.
“They were doing covers and the first thing that attracted me was their voices,” she said.
“I used to follow One Direction, The Vamps and 5 Seconds Of Summer, but HomeTown has taken over from them.”
The teenager invited a select group of friends to see the band.
“All my friends here today are genuine HomeTown fans,” she said.
“I just think that true fans should get the opportunity to meet them and to get to talk to them.”
During the afternoon, HomeTown also serenaded Stephanie Rennicks, a friend of Hannah’s mum, who was celebrating her birthday.
“They have unbelievable voices,” Stephanie said.
“To hear them singing live just blew me away. They are amazing.”
Another guest, Olivia O’Brien agreed: “Their individual voices are like, wow! And they’re so handsome. I took my daughter, Sarah, out of school early to come and see them.
“She’s got their photos and signatures and she’s thrilled. They’re a really nice bunch of lads and let’s hope they stay like that.”
As they tucked into cocktail sausages and chicken wings, HomeTown were grilled about their relationship with Louis Walsh.
“It’s very surreal having Louis as our boss,” Cian admitted.
“We used to see him managing Boyzone and Westlife, and on the X Factor, and now he’s our manager. It’s unreal.”
Dean revealed: “Louis is hard on us, but in a good way. He pushes us past what we would see as our limits. He throws us into the deep end, but so far we’re swimming.”
As the boys were leaving Hannah’s house, mum Joanne said it was a day her only child will never forget.
“There’s no doubt about it, this is the most fantastic thing that has happened to Hannah,” Joanne added. “She will be talking about this forever.”
HomeTown’s new single, Cry For Help, is out now.