Spooky invasion during Sidmouth FolkWeek

Australian choir takes Sidmouth by storm and parades 600 novice singers through town

SIDMOUTH was invaded on Wednesday by The Spooky Men’s Chorale, parading a 600-strong group of novice singers through the town.

Returning to Sidmouth for the third time, the eccentric, all-male Australian choir took their harmonies to the streets, after a packed lunch-time voice workshop at the Ham Marquee, writes Emma Finch.

Broom-wielding “spooky men” lead the all-singing procession through FolkWeek crowds, impressing all with the strength and sheer volume of their newly-learnt tunes.

The parade caused light-hearted havoc with Fore Street traffic and disrupted a street performance in Market Place.

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As on-lookers laughed and photographed the scene, the parade continued past Dukes bar and on to the seafront, finishing on the beach opposite the Royal York and Faulkner Hotel.

Having toured the length and breadth of Australia and the UK in recent years, The Spooky Men’s Chorale was delighted to be back in town.

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Group leader, Stephen Tabberner, dubbed “the Spookmeister” said: “We’re having an awesome week.

“We love Sidmouth and the folk festival but honestly, one of my favourite moments so far is just walking along the cliffs this morning. The setting is just incredible.”

The Spooky Men specialise in Georgian-inspired songs and harmonies, with a touch of humour thrown in by Stephen.

They performed to a packed Ham Marquee last Monday, followed by a choral workshop for kids on Tuesday and the adult workshop and finale procession on Wednesday.

A big hit with festival goers in recent years, The Spooky Men’s Chorale’s quirky talents are sure to feature in FolkWeek programmes of the future.

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