May 18, 2010

My Favorite YouTube Video

In honor of YouTube's fifth anniversary, I'll share my personal favorite video,which is Susan Boyle singing I Dreamed a Dream during her first appearance on Britain's Got Talent. Now they won't let you embed that particular video, so if you want to watch it again, you'll have to click here.

Despite nearly 100 million hits, Susan's video didn't make the Top 10 YouTube videos of all time. (Somehow Lady Gaga managed to get two videos on that list.) But I still love Susan's the most. There's something about the audience's change of heart in response to this frumpy-looking woman once she starts to sing that just gets me every stinking time. As her voice soars, the image is so full of hope, that the words from Les Misérables are easily ignored. We forget that the dream has died.

I had a dream my life would be
So different from this hell I'm living
So different now from what it seemed
Now life has killed the dream I dreamed.

The lyrics aren't exactly inspiring, are they? And yet, they seem to fit Susan Boyle just as much as the music itself fits her voice...a beautiful melody to go with words that seem a bit out of place.

There are times when I've wondered if Susan herself isn't a little bitter despite her joking with Simon and the other judges, as well as during a number of interviews over the past year. I hope I'm wrong about that. So many people seem to have written her off throughout her life. Even I winced a little when I read her biography on Wikipedia and got to the line "Boyle never married..." Excuse me? Never? I know I have trouble keeping up with which celebrities are dead and which ones are alive, but I feel sure that Susan Boyle is still alive. "Never" makes it sound as though the possibility of marriage is so remote, it's not worth considering. Give me a break. I'll admit, her options may have been limited before Britain's Got Talent, but I'm thinking the odds of marriage for Susan have improved considerably since then.

When she was briefly hospitalized after the Britain's Got Talent finale, I worried that she wouldn't be able to pull off success. But Susan seems to have done alright. She has performed all over the world, and is starting to work on her second album. And Lady Gaga has reportedly expressed an interest in working with Susan, so maybe Susan will get a top 10 YouTube video yet.

Life doesn't seem to be killing Susan's dream at all. ;-)

Most of all, I think I like Susan's story so much because it fits my favorite passage of scripture, from the book of Jeremiah. I feel sure that she must have sought God with all of her heart.

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. I will be found by you," declares the LORD, "and will bring you back from captivity." You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.  ~ Jeremiah 29:11-14a


  1. DH loves that video too. I thought her first CD was excellent and will buy the second one when it comes out.

  2. I love that video. I admit that I cried watching her go from this frumpy thing to beautiful during the course of that song. She is amazing.

  3. Funny what we find when we put aside our first impressions and see how gifted people are.

  4. Susan Boyle's story is truly inspirational. Whenever I see that tape, and it's been many times, I never fail to feel the same emotions as the first time I viewed it - complete joy as the human spirit triumphs against all odds.

  5. I was as enchanted by that video of Susan's first performance as others have been. It does give one a thrill. Marriage...whether we do marry or don't entirely in God's hands. Yes, the lyrics are pretty depressing, but her spirit as she sings them is completely uplifting. Thanks for pointing us back there today.

  6. margaret, when i watched that video i burst into
    tears. it was just too much to see the people
    laughing at her and then to hear that voice!

    such justification and redemption!!!

  7. It was pretty darn amazing! And a victory for the middle-aged...not that we're there, of course.