MADRID — On the Spanish island of Mallorca, police have turned to singing to cheer up residents confined to their homes by a government-imposed coronavirus lockdown.

Footage on social media shows two squad cars cruising down a narrow street in the town of Algaida, lights flashing and sirens blaring, before pulling up to let the occupants spill out onto the road.

“Do you feel like singing?” one of the officers shouts, guitar in hand, before bursting into a spirited rendition of the Catalan children’s song “Joan Petit Quan Balla.”

As his colleagues twirl and clap, residents come to their balconies to join in the festivities, whooping and cheering.

The sight of the police serenading from ground level, which went viral in Spain and beyond, provides a mirror image of the balcony concerts that have sprung up across Italian and Spanish cities since both countries imposed restrictions on freedom of movement that keep their citizens cooped up inside.

With just 400 confirmed cases of coronavirus as of Monday, the Balearic Islands are one of Spain’s least affected regions. However, the crackdown on international travel and widespread flight cancellations will weigh heavily on their tourism-dependent economy.

As the song draws to a closing crescendo, the singer thanks his audience and leaves them with a final message of encouragement: “Stay strong.”

Tuesday, March 31, 2020