Who Sang It Better – Any Dream Will Do

A picture of 4 josephs in their coat with the title any dream will do over it

For the 10th in the series of Who Sang It Better, I’ve decided to look at the musical that first introduced me to musical theatre. Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat was the first show I ever saw and since then I’ve not really left a theatre auditorum! Any Dream Will Do therefore seemed a fitting choice for this post.

Kicking off the post is Donny Osmond an the 1999 film. Osmond had already played Joseph in 1992 in Toronto and then he relocated to Chicago in 1993-1994 to play the role.

It is probably worth noting at this point that many of these versions, including Donny’s, are pre-recorded version so they have a slight advantage. I found Donny at some points a bit nasally, for example at around 0:33 seconds and 1:28 seconds. His voice also sounds thinner when the song gets bigger, at around 1:29 for the long ‘alone.’ Negatives aside he has a very calming vibe to the song and does have an adorable twinkle in his eye which is great for this role.

Up next is Jason Donovan who originated the role of Joseph in the West End in 1991. He has since reappeared in the show as the Pharaoh in the West End with Jac Yarrow as Joseph. Lets look at his version of Any Dream Will Do.

Jason for me is the sound I expect to hear when this song comes on. He has a very smooth tone to his voice which I like for this part. I also enjoy his bigger moment in the song around 1:20 and the dynamics throughout it and how he moves to the softer moments.

Next up is Philip Schofield who took over from Jason Donovan in 1991. Asides from Joseph he hasn’t done a huge amount of musical theatre compared to the likes of Jason Donovan.

When you watch Philip on TV now I forget that he could sing like this! I really enjoy this version, he doesn’t try to over sing it and it has wonderful tender feel to it. My only slight criticism is that some of the lowest notes get lost but this is a very minor niggle in otherwise a beautiful version of the song.

Lee Mead won the role of Joseph on ‘Any Dream Will Do’ which was a BBC1 programme to find their Joseph. He therefore played the role in 2007.

Lee has a beautifully rich tone to his voice. His crescendo in the middle has a bigger sound than any of the other versions and he really gets to show off his vocal ability at this point (around 1:30).

Joe McElderry rose to ‘fame’ after winning the 6th series of X-Factor. He played Joseph in 2016 in the tour version of Joseph.

Joe has a more poppy feel to this version than the others, this appeals to me as it seems he has his own stamp on it. There is the occasional end of the word we lose, such as ‘coat’ and ‘light’ around 1:33 but once again a minor gripe.

Our most recent Joseph has been Jac Yarrow but I’ve been unable to locate any videos of him singing this song. If you do find any then please let me know (no bootlegs!!)

I have actually really surprised myself with my favourite version, I went into looking at Any Dream Will Do, expecting to love Lee Meads version and whilst I did like that version my favourite is actually Philip Schofields. Who was your favourite version? Let me know in the comments.

If you like this article you might also like the others in the Who Sang It Better Series which includes Memory from Cats, Burn from Hamilton and Bring HIm Home from Les Miserables. You might also like my articles on top 10 Musical Theatre feel-good songs.

6 comments

  • Gary Bond, always and forever. His version from 1972 is on YouTube.

  • SO hard to choose but I think mines the classic DONNY!
    I LOVED joe mcElderry as Joseph in the tour and if this was who sung it better for ‘close every door’ it would be him!!

  • l been all whiching any dream will do them are amazing l got my winging is joe McElderry

  • Joe McElderry was hailed as ‘the best sung Joseph’ and I agree!! Cannot beat his version, especially of ‘Close Every Door’ and that last high note (which is not in early youtube versions)!!

  • Amanda Jayne Bown

    I loved Joe Mcelderry has Joseph his voice was perfect for me . Close Every Door was so powerful.

  • Well i think definatley Joe McElderry. After all the many performances Joe gave he never failed on any performance when singing Close Every Door. Perfection with this song. Emotional. Expressive, really feeling the story of this song with his Magnificent voice & tones

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