I Dreamed a Dream

Music review by
Jacqueline Rupp, Common Sense Media
I Dreamed a Dream Music Poster Image
Unlikely phenom belts out safe hits kids won't want to hear.

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 2 reviews

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this music.

Positive Messages

Tracks like "I Dreamed a Dream" and "Who I Was Born to Be" offer up inspiring advice that tells listeners to take a chance and go for what they want in life. "And although I may not know the answers, I can finally see I am free, and if the questions led me here, then I am who I was born to be."

Positive Role Models & Representations

Of course, from her televised performances, Boyle has shown audiences that you can't judge a book by its cover. On this album she sings "I've got to be me now, cause there's already one of you," and includes several songs about self-determination and perseverance.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that even though they might be caught up in the Susan Boyle-mania that's sweeping the globe, it doesn't mean their kids will be entertained or even mildly interested in this release. This album, full of jazzy standards and mature ballads, doesn't have anything that little ears shouldn't hear. But the slow, operatic vocals and classical melodies might hit a sour note with the kiddies, so be prepared for grumbles.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 14-year-old Written byTsion December 27, 2009

Beautiful Songs from a Beautiful Voice!

Susan Boyle's debut album is positive, inspiring, and completely clean. There isn't a single iota of inapropriate material. Older kids probably won... Continue reading
Parent of a 9-year-old Written bylaw53ut December 14, 2009

Good music for any age!

I love this album, not just for the songs she has selected to put on it, but her rendition of each is an inspiration. Susan has such depth and range to her. I c... Continue reading
Teen, 15 years old Written bydancer1011 July 26, 2010


This is a good lesson.Susan is VERY unique
Teen, 15 years old Written bydoctor2394 January 10, 2010
I absolutely loved this album. The melodies were soaring and melodic--and ten times better than any teen trash most teens listen to. As a 15 year old, I can say... Continue reading

What's the story?

I DREAMED A DREAM is Scottish singer/YouTube sensation/Britain's Got Talent runner-up Susan Boyle's debut album. And although this overnight sensation may have dreamed a dream of one day singing for a living, it's doubtful she could have ever conceived of a reception like this. Her dream is breaking records across the globe, and the stats are startling: number one debut on the U.S. Billboard 200, the highest debut ever for a new solo female artist in the time of Soundscan, the biggest opening sales week in 2009, Amazon's best-selling album in pre-sales, and the fastest-selling global female debut album to date. The history-making album is, of course, loaded with Boyle's most famous song renditions, like the repeatedly viewed online title track, "Wild Horses," and "Cry Me a River." It also includes some faith-based tracks such as "Amazing Grace" and "How Great Thou Art."Â

Is it any good?

Since the video clips released long before this album was produced, there's never been any doubt that Susan Boyle is a woman with some vocal chords. But with this studio debut, Boyle has to answer the question of whether her Cinderella story and awe-inspiring vocals can transfer to recorded tracks. The answer depends on the listener. Sure Boyle sings with near perfect pitch on tracks like "Silent Night" and Madonna's "You'll See," but she also dulls down upbeat tracks like "Daydream Believer." It's refreshing to see the Internet sensation take a risk on lesser known songs like Patty Griffin's "Up to the Mountain," but Boyle will have to add some energy to subsequent albums if she wants to appeal to audiences used to spirited teen pop stars. Given her track record for surprising audiences, it's definitely within her grasp.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the media hype surrounding Susan Boyle. Do you think this album would be as popular if Boyle was not a contestant on Britain's Got Talent? What does this success say about the cross-promotion between TV and the music industry? Are shows like

  • What do you think about Susan Boyle's image? Would she be as popular today if she looked like the typical pop star, or does her average image help her relate to people? What lesson do you think you can learn from Boyle's story and talent? Does it give you confidence to know that someone can be recognized for their skills rather than just their looks?

  • Families can talk about women in the media. Susan Boyle doesn't fit the typical pop star standard. Why do you think women are so pressured to be ultra-slim and ultra-sexy if they want to be in the entertainment industry? There have been many male singers who are overweight or not what society would consider to be extremely attractive. Is there a double standard, and are men less likely to be judged on their looks?

Music details

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality.

Learn how we rate