Sunday, May 30, 2010

Susan Boyle - I Dreamed A Dream

"I Dreamed a Dream" is a song from the musical Les Misérables. It is a solo that is sung by the character Fantine during the first act. The music is by Claude-Michel Schönberg, with orchestrations by John Cameron. The English lyrics are by Herbert Kretzmer, based on the original French libretto by Alain Boublil.

The song is a lament, sung by the anguished, dying and impoverished Fantine, who thinks back to happier days and wonders at all that has gone wrong in her life.

Susan Boyle version

The song had a resurgence in popularity in 2009 when Scottish singer Susan Boyle performed it live as her audition for the third series of the British reality television programme, Britain's Got Talent. Boyle's performance elicited a unanimous vote for passage into the next round of competition by judges Piers Morgan, Amanda Holden and Simon Cowell, with Morgan giving Boyle "the biggest yes [he had] ever given" in his three years of judging the show. Elaine Paige, Boyle's role model, later expressed interest in singing a duet with her. The programme received high ratings and Boyle's performance was quickly added to sites such as YouTube, where millions of people viewed it in the first month alone. Boyle sang the song again during the finals of Britain's Got Talent on 30 May 2009, where she placed second in the competition behind British dance troupe Diversity. Today, it is known as the song that catapulted her to super-stardom, and it helped sales of her album I Dreamed a Dream. Currently, the album has been declared as the fastest selling debut album of all time in the UK, and sold 701,000 copies in its first week in just the US, breaking the record for highest debut ever for a solo female artist.

Shortly after Boyle's audition aired on ITV in April, the Original London Cast Recording of LuPone singing "I Dreamed a Dream" was downloaded to such a degree that the song entered music charts in the U.S. and UK. The U.S. Billboard magazine's Hot Digital Songs and Hot Singles Recurrents charts for the week of 2 May 2009 had LuPone's 1985 recording at #61 and #20, respectively. LuPone's version also reached #45 on the UK Singles Chart on the week of 25 April 2009. Susan Boyle's later 2009 recording rivaled pre-order sales records on in November 2009.

I Dreamed a Dream is the debut album from Scottish singer Susan Boyle. It was released on 23 November 2009 by Syco Music in the United Kingdom, and by Columbia Records in the United States one day later. In the standard edition, 11 out of the 12 songs that appear on the album are cover songs, plus the original composition "Who I Was Born To Be". It quickly became the world's biggest selling album of 2009. The album has sold over 9 million copies worldwide.

The album entered the UK album chart at number 1 and became the fastest-selling debut album in 2009 in the UK, selling 411,820 copies, beating the record previously set by Spirit by Leona Lewis and outselling the rest of the top five albums combined during its first week on sale. The album remained at the top spot for four weeks, becoming the biggest selling album in the UK in 2009. In the U.S., I Dreamed a Dream debuted at #1 on the Billboard 200, with 701,000 copies sold in its first week, breaking the record for the highest debut by a new solo female artist in the SoundScan era (post 1991). I Dreamed a Dream became the biggest opening sales week of 2009 in the U.S., beating out Eminem's Relapse which sold 608,000. It was the second-biggest selling album of 2009 in the U.S., with 3.1 million copies sold, right behind Taylor Swift's Fearless at 3.2 million copies (and which, released in 2008, had been on sale all year). In only six weeks of sales, it became the biggest selling album in the world for 2009.

So... Never stop dreaming

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