THE enchanting music that accompanied a dramatic highlight of the Tall Ships visit to Sunderland could be recorded for posterity if a crowdfunding bid is successful.

Heg and the Wolf Chorus provided the perfect soundscape for Cirque Bijou’s tight rope walk from the south bank of the Wear to the Wearmouth Bridge on the Friday night of the Tall Ships Races visit.

The music was composed by Bristol-based Heg Brignall and performed by a 50-strong choir of Sunderland singers led by local musician Catherine Stevens.

Now a crowdfunding bid has been launched to record the music from the performance, which was called Portolan.

“We thoroughly enjoyed performing Portolan at the Tall Ships in Sunderland, and it was a really special evening for me as my family, who are originally from Seaham and Sunderland, came home to support me, the chorus and the choir,” said Heg.

“There was some interest from people wanting to buy the music, so we thought we’d see if we could crowdfund the £3,000 we’d need for musicians, studio time and the CD presses,” she added.

Heg’s songs and music were performed by a choir on the Wearmouth Bridge as Chris Bullzini and Johanne Humblet from Cirque Bijou climbed 100ft along a 700ft long high wire suspended across the river in a spectacular finish to the third day of the Tall Ships Races.

Thousands packed the river bank to watch the spectacle.

“It was an amazing night and we were proud to be part of it,” said Heg.

If sufficient money is raised, Heg and the Wolf Chorus would record six tracks on to an EP. Her group incorporates singer Julu (correct) Irvine, double bass player Joe Kelly and fiddle player Aaron Catlow. They tour three times a year and were invited to play a key role in Portolan after a Cirque Bijou director heard them play at a Bristol festival.

“Our music always has a storytelling element to it, and he thought we’d be right for Portolan. Music for the show was inspired by the seascape of the Sunderland coast,” Heg explained.

Helen Green, Head of Performance at Sunderland Culture, who delivered more than 200 cultural events over the four-day visit of the Tall Ships, said: “Heg and the Wolf Chorus’s beautiful, evocative and haunting music contributed massively to the enjoyment of Portolan and I’m sure many of the thousands of people lucky enough to have seen the show will be interested in a copy of the CD.

“I very much hope Heg raises the £3,000 needed to record the EP.”

If you would like to make a contribution to the crowdfunding campaign or would like to reserve a copy of the CD, go to

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