Lebohang “Lebo M.” Morake (born 20 May 1964) is a South African producer and composer. He arranged and performed music for The Lion King movies and stage productions. He was recommended to Disney by Hans Zimmer, the score composer of The Lion King, and was later hired to form and conduct the African choir that sang for the movies. His voice is the first voice heard in the beginning of the film, singing a chant over the opening sequence which is often considered synonymous with the film's image in popular culture. He also contributed to the sequel to the film's soundtrack, Rhythm of the Pride Lands, and the film's direct-to-video sequel The Lion King II: Simba's Pride.
Lebo Morake was born on 20 May 1964 in the Apartheid-ridden Soweto in Johannesburg, South Africa and inspired by Nelson Mandela, he spent years working hard in the South African slums but was exiled from South Africa in 1979. He made his way to the U.S. and to Los Angeles where he worked in a variety of jobs, including begging and serving at McDonald's. He returned to South Africa 5 years after the elimination of the Apartheid regime after being gone for 20 years. He lives with his family in Johannesburg and Los Angeles. He founded the Lebo M Foundation and Till Dawn Entertainment.