One month to go! Marwell Zoo’s Choir ‘Gets Ready’ for Marwell’s Zany Zebras

June 17, 2016

“They’re all Grevy’s and here they come. Get ready, ‘cause here they come!”

With just a matter of weeks before Marwell’s Zany Zebras hit the streets of Southampton for the UK’s ‘MANE’ public art trail, Marwell Zoo choir members have created a music video to celebrate the exciting event.

Set to the well-known Motown song ‘Get Ready’ by The Temptations, the video calls on those with a love for the endangered Grevy’s zebra to visit the 10-week trail this summer.

From volunteers to trustees, to animal keepers and biologists, all sections of the zoo are involved with the choir. They began rehearsing in 2012 under the guidance of Musical Director, Dan Cooper. As well as recording music videos, the choir has performed at live events around the county including Winchester Hat Fair and the zoo’s own ‘Sunset Party in the Park’.

Lyrics to the song were re-written by Paul Simmons, Marwell Wildlife’s Head of Marketing and one of the choir’s original members. Paul said: “The choir is so excited about Marwell’s Zany Zebras that we can’t help but burst into song when an appropriate opportunity presents itself!

“Our previous music videos received great feedback so this seemed a perfect time to do another. It’s not only fun to create but raising awareness of zebra conservation is very important to us all and something staff at Marwell are really passionate about.

“The song and video were inspired by all the good will the project has already generated and starts the official 30 day countdown to the trail’s launch on July 16th.”

It took the Marwell team two days to film the video around the zoo and in Southampton city centre. Gilbert, the zoo’s own infamous sculpture and poster boy for the event, has a starring role, as he is shown visiting some of Southampton’s most iconic landmarks and taking in the sights of Marwell Zoo. Some of the zoo’s other animal stars make an appearance, with cameo roles for the meerkats, rhinos and the Humboldt penguins.

The choir has previously produced videos to promote the auction at the end of the zoo’s Go! Rhinos project and more recently they re-wrote the lyrics to Pharrell Williams’ ‘Happy’ for the attraction’s ‘Rise of the Dinosaurs’ event. Both videos became instant hits on YouTube with thousands of people ‘liking’ and sharing them online.

This time around they enlisted the expertise of a student film crew from Southampton-based agency ‘Solent Creatives’, who helped ensure the video has a professional finish.

Kirstie Mathieson, Marwell’s Zany Zebras project manager, said: “When Marwell Choir approached me about this I thought it was another fantastic idea.

“The staff gave up their own precious time to rehearse and star in the music video. I would like to thank them all for getting behind this project and spreading the Marwell’s Zany Zebras love.”

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