Prelude to a Dream

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Prelude to a Dream
A photo of a young girl gazing dreamily over a grassy area and resting her crossed, bare arms on a wooden fence railing. A wooded area is in the background.
Studio album by
ReleasedNovember 10, 2009
Jackie Evancho chronology
Prelude to a Dream
O Holy Night

Prelude to a Dream is the debut album of American singer Jackie Evancho, released on November 10, 2009.[1][2] Evancho was nine years old when the album was released. The album consists mainly of covers of classical crossover songs such as Andrea Bocelli's "Con te partirò" and "The Prayer", Josh Groban's "To Where You Are" and Martina McBride's "Concrete Angel", and also included some classical pieces and a rendition of "Amazing Grace", among other selections.

The album was released independently through CD Baby. Nine months later, after Evancho's first performance on America's Got Talent, the album charted in August 2010 on the Billboard 200 at #121 and at #2 on the Billboard Classical Albums chart. Evancho's parents withdrew the album later the same month, however, citing Evancho's vocal progress since its recording.[3]

Track listing [4][edit]

  1. Everytime — 3:42
  2. Concrete Angel — 4:03
  3. Teaching Angels How to Fly (original song by James Breedwell) — 5:18
  4. Starry Starry Night (Vincent) — 4:43
  5. Think of Me — 3:09
  6. Memory — 3:53
  7. To Where You Are — 3:52
  8. River of Dreams[5] — 4:23
  9. Dark Waltz — 4:21
  10. The Prayer — 4:30
  11. Amazing Grace — 4:43
  12. Ave Maria — 4:52[6]
  13. O Mio Babbino Caro — 4:04
  14. Con Te Partiro — 3:54

America's Got Talent impact on sales; withdrawal of album[edit]

Jason Dowd of The Expressionist magazine gave Prelude to a Dream a glowing review. Rating the album 5 out of a possible 5, Dowd wrote:

This nine-year-old girl sings like a bird, with perfect harmony, passion, and heart. ... Jackie’s vocals on this CD are second to none; she has pitch perfect control and powerful vocals when needed, while delivering a sweet innocence in her voice. ... Jackie demonstrates her talent most in the song, "O Mio Babino Caro". I am amazed at the power and range she is able to achieve on this song. ... Some other great songs to mention on this album are "Teaching Angels How to Fly" for its sweet, soothing and heart-warming story and vocals, and also "Amazing Grace". ... We would definitely recommend this CD to anyone, and if you don’t like classical crossover, Jackie will make you a fan.[7]

For the first nine months after its independent release, however, the album "had sold a negligible amount".[2]

On August 10, 2010, Evancho performed on a special YouTube quarter-final edition of the fifth season of America's Got Talent. She was selected to perform after submitting an audition clip on YouTube of "Panis Angelicus" that received the most viewer votes of any submission.[8] In her first performance on the show, Evancho sang "O Mio Babbino Caro", receiving a standing ovation, and was awarded a trip to Universal Studios Florida for receiving the most fan votes of all the YouTube submissions to the show.[9][10]

After this performance, the album debuted in August 2010 on the Billboard 200 chart at #121 and at #2 on the Billboard Classical Albums Chart.[11][12] It sold 4,000 copies that week, nearly all digital,[2] and remained on Billboard's Classical Albums chart for four weeks.[13] Nine of the songs on the album charted on Billboard's Classical Digital Songs chart.[12] Evancho's parents withdrew Prelude to a Dream from distribution in late August 2010. Evancho's father, Mike Evancho, gave the following reason for the withdrawal: "Because the CD was recorded about a year and a half ago and her current voice no longer sounds like what it did then ... we decided to withdraw Prelude to a Dream and will be concentrating on new material as part of her progress."[3] The CD has become a collector's item, and autographed copies have sold for more than $3,000.[14]



  1. ^ track list and release date, 2009, accessed December 29, 2012
  2. ^ a b c d Caulfield, Keith. "Got Talent Kid Jackie Evancho Makes Chart Impact", news, August 19, 2010, accessed January 20, 2012
  3. ^ a b Sciullo, Maria. "Jackie Evancho: Little girl with the big voice", Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, August 30, 2010, accessed January 20, 2012
  4. ^ album track listing Retrieved 10-30-2011
  5. ^ Based on the winter largo section from Vivaldi's The Four Seasons and originally written for Hayley Westenra's 2003 album Pure. It was then the title track of Westenra's 2008 album River of Dreams
  6. ^ Instead of Walter Scott's German text to Schubert's melody, Evancho sings the words of the "Hail Mary" prayer in Latin
  7. ^ Dowd, Jason. "Prelude to a Dream – Review", The Expressionist, November 3, 2009
  8. ^ Takiff, Jonathan. "Jackie Evancho sings at the Mann Center",, August 24, 2012; and Green, David. "Jackie Evancho Brings Songs of the Silver Screen to McCallum Theatre, 11/16",, All Materials, October 30, 2012
  9. ^ Jackie Evancho's youtube audition, August 10, 2010, accessed December 19, 2011
  10. ^ "10-year-old wows on America's Got Talent", Dallas Morning News, August 14, 2010, accessed January 9, 2012; "Susan Boyle vs. Jackie Evancho: Who Is Your Favorite?", Fox News, August 4, 2010, accessed October 4, 2010; and Benigno, Anthony. "Jackie Evancho on America's Got Talent: 10-year-old singer stuns audience with booming voice", New York Daily News, August 11, 2010, accessed March 21, 2012
  11. ^ "Classical Albums, Week of August 28, 2010", Prometheus Global Media, August 17, 2010, accessed January 20, 2012; and Mitchell, Gail. "Jackie Evancho On Landing Her First Billboard 200 Hit", Prometheus Global Media, November 29, 2010, accessed April 25, 2012
  12. ^ a b Trust, Gary. "Chart Beat Thursday: Eminem, Katy Perry, Billy Ray Cyrus", Prometheus Global Media, August 19, 2010, accessed July 8, 2014
  13. ^ "Jackie Evancho: Chart History", Prometheus Global Media, accessed January 2, 2013
  14. ^ "Jackie Evancho Autographed Prelude to a Dream", eBay, July 3, 2011, accessed September 15, 2012
  15. ^ "Heatseekers Albums, Week of August 28, 2010",, accessed January 20, 2012