Radio 3's baroque Bieber video goes viral

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A video featuring a baroque version of Justin Bieber's song "Beauty and a Beat" for Radio 3 has proved a hit on Youtube.

The recording from a Comic Relief concert has been watched more than 52,000 times since it was uploaded in the last week by the station and the University of York, where it was performed.

Viewers have seen classical countertenor Robin Blaze and the university's Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir struggle to keep a straight face while singing lyrics such as "We gonna party like it's 3012" and "Body rock, girl, I can feel your body rock".

Radio 3 producer Les Pratt, who is based in Salford, came up with the idea as the Red Nose Day concert also featured the work of 17th-century composer Heinrich Biber.

From there it was a few steps to the similar-sounding Bieber.

Robin Blaze Countertenor Robin Blaze could not keep a straight face during the performance

"Given that the UK has been racked with Bieberfever recently, I thought why don't we put Heinrich Biber and Justin Bieber in the same concert," said Pratt.

The concert drew local students and older visitors who, the producer admitted, were not exactly familiar with Bieber's work.

"But they still laughed because it was all so silly."

Tweets to Justin Bieber's fansites, which have thousands of followers, led to the video being picked up by the pop star's fans (or Beliebers) across the world.

The video was also tweeted by the broadcaster Stephen Fry and resulted in an increase in younger followers to Radio 3's Twitter account.

The high-pitched rendition, arranged by Steve Pycroft, leaves out Nicki Minaj's rap in the original song. Conducted by Peter Seymour, the performance can be seen here.

A parody version featuring the Radio 3 cover playing over Justin Bieber's original video for Beauty and a Beat has also been uploaded to the Dailymotion website here.

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