Does this maddening chorus really need to be part of our circle of life?
That’s what straphangers are asking themselves after being jolted by ear-splitting “Lion King” ads that are turning subway platforms into the cement Serengeti.
The recorded messages blare the famous Zulu lead-in to “Circle of Life,” before advising straphangers that the long-running musical is back on Broadway.
“I feel pretty annoyed,” Mark Hoopes, 36, a landscape architect, told The Post after he heard the ad while waiting for a downtown 6 train at 77th St.
The spot registered 99.1 decibels on a sound pressure level meter. That’s louder than a motorcycle engine, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The feds actually require that employers take protective measures if workplace noise exceeds 85 decibels.
Dozens of commuters blasted the Metropolitan Transportation Authority on social media, complaining not just about the volume, but the frequency of the spots.
“New ad for Lion King on Broadway is so aggressively loud it scared multiple people on my subway platform,” one wrote, adding skull emojis.
“Day 2 of being tortured by The Lion King at EVERY single subway station in NYC,” another wrote.
“Can you please stop playing to lion king subway announcements? They’re extremely loud, jarring, and unpleasant, and not what people want to hear (repeatedly) after a long day of work,” a third pleaded.
A Disney rep told The Post the ads were scheduled to stop running on Friday.
In response to a straphanger who tweeted about the spot, New York City Transit said that “this is one of our advertising announcements in conjunction with the reopening of Broadway. We hope you enjoyed the sounds.”
Stephen Snowder, an Upper East Side straphanger, tweeted at the agency: “Please do a Twitter search for ‘lion king’ and ‘subway’ and lmk if you find a single person who likes having Circle of Life blasted full volume at them first thing in the morning. Please get rid of this ad, it is one of the worst ideas you have had in a while.”
The MTA spokesman Tim Minton admitted the ads were initially louder than anticipated.
“We got a bit exuberant in welcoming New Yorkers back to Broadway after its 18-month shutdown. But Hakuna Matata — no worries — we turned the volume down after a small number of the 11 million riders who heard that call asked for a quieter commute,” he said in a statement.