Fact Check: Military Singing Group Were NOT Arrested In Russia In 2022

Fact Check

  • by: Alexis Tereszcuk
Fact Check: Military Singing Group Were NOT Arrested In Russia In 2022 Fact Check: Military Singing Group Were NOT Arrested In Russia In 2022 Probably Stunt

Does a video show a military singing group getting arrested in St. Petersburg, Russia amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022? No, that's not true: The video is from 2015 and shows the Russian Army choir, a well-known singing group, in a video that appeared to be a stunt to promote the James Bond movie "Spectre."

The claim appeared in a Facebook post (archived here) on March 12, 2022. It opens:

This video of a military singing group attempting to perform 'no to nuclear war, yes to sunlight' and getting arrested, in St. Petersburg, Russia, is currently blowing up the internet.

This is what the post looked like on Facebook at the time of writing:

Screen Shot 2022-03-30 at 7.33.56 PM.png

Facebook screenshot

(Source: Facebook screenshot taken on Thu Mar 31 18:54:56 2022 UTC)

The 25-second video shows the Russian Army choir inside a shopping mall with music playing when a group of police dressed in black appear to attack them, throw them to the ground and drag them away. The post claims they were singing "no to nuclear war, yes to sunlight."

An Internet search shows the video in an article published on RT.com, a Russian state-funded media outlet, titled, "Get Unlucky? Commandos 'abduct' Russian Army choir singing James Bond Spectre theme (VIDEO)," which explains it appears to have been a stunt promotion for a movie:

The Russian Army choristers are used to rave reviews for their renditions of pop classics such as 'Get Lucky.' But a group of commandos took exception to their version of the new James Bond 'Spectre' theme, it seems - and 'abducted' them mid-song.
Five members of the Russian Army choir were hitting the high notes in their performance of Sam Smith's 'Writing's On The Wall,' the latest Bond theme hit, when they were suddenly 'attacked' in a St. Petersburg shopping center.
But rather than an angry reaction from Russian special services, the incident appears likely to be a huge joke - a publicity stunt on the eve of 'Spectre' opening in Russian cinemas.

Smith's "Writing's On The Wall" does not include lyrics about nuclear war or peace. The song, which is heard briefly in the clip of the stunt, can be found here.

Other Lead Stories fact checks related to the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine can be found here.

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  Alexis Tereszcuk

Alexis Tereszcuk is a writer and fact checker at Lead Stories and an award-winning journalist who spent over a decade breaking hard news and celebrity scoop with RadarOnline and Us Weekly.

As the Entertainment Editor, she investigated Hollywood stories and conducted interviews with A-list celebrities and reality stars.  

Alexis’ crime reporting earned her spots as a contributor on the Nancy Grace show, CNN, Fox News and Entertainment Tonight, among others.

Read more about or contact Alexis Tereszcuk

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