Singers go mighty wild to raise money for zoo

A singing group has been monkeying around filming a zany video to raise funds for Newquay Zoo.

The City of Truro Male Choir performed The Lion Sleeps Tonight with the help of actor and comedian Kernow King in aid of the attraction, which is struggling financially because of the coronavirus pandemic.

City of Truro Male Choir performed The Lion Sleeps Tonight with the help of actor and comedian Kernow King

Thirty-nine choir members donned various forms of jungle attire to perform the popular classic while musical director and international composer Russell Pascoe appears being chased by a lion.

The video, entitled The Frog Chorus, has already received more than 9,000 views on YouTube and praise from singer Aled Jones.

Singers learned parts at weekly virtual Zoom practices, and were recorded individually and mixed remotely by choir member Adam Delbridge–Smith.

Filming was carried out in a covid-secure manner in Boscawen Park, with the participation of Edward Rowe, aka Kernow King, and filmmaker brothers Simon and Brett Harvey.

Mr Pascoe said: “In these appallingly difficult times, I’ve been delighted by the men’s enthusiasm and participation. Most importantly, this project has been a way for our group to stay connected while we are unable to meet face to face.

“We had a great deal of fun making the film and hope we can bring a chuckle and a smile to people’s faces in these stressful times, as well as raise some much-needed funds for the zoo.”

Choir chairman John Larke said: “The video is part of a larger project we are undertaking to record how we’ve adapted to using virtual means to continue as a choir, and to record our performances for the benefit of others.

“It has allowed us to keep our spirit, music and social cohesion together, which is what amateur singing is all about. We’ll be circulating this to the wider choral community to encourage others to try such methods.”

The video was produced with help from Cornwall Community Foundation and arts organisation FEAST.

The film is on YouTube. Donations can be made at www.newquayzoo.org.uk