The Prayer (Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli song)

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"The Prayer"
The Prayer promo.jpg
Single by Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli
from the album Quest for Camelot, These Are Special Times and Sogno
Released1 March 1999 (1999-03-01)
Recorded1998 Chartmarker Studios, Sony Sound Stage, Criteria Recording Studios
Genre Classical crossover
Length4:29
Label
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
  • David Foster
  • Tony Renis
  • Carole Bayer Sager
Celine Dion singles chronology
"On ne change pas"
(1999)
"The Prayer"
(1999)
"Treat Her Like a Lady"
(1999)
Andrea Bocelli singles chronology
"Je vis pour elle"
(1997)
"The Prayer"
(1999)
"Canto della Terra"
(1999)

"The Prayer" is a popular song written by David Foster, Carole Bayer Sager, Alberto Testa and Tony Renis. The song was originally recorded in two solo versions for the 1998 film Quest for Camelot , in English by Canadian singer Celine Dion and in Italian by Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli. A duet between Dion and Bocelli later appeared on their respective studio albums, These Are Special Times (1998) and Sogno (1999), and was released as an airplay single on 1 March 1999. [1] The song won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1999 and a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals in 2000.

David Foster Canadian musician, record producer, songwriter

David Walter Foster, OC, OBC, is a Canadian musician, record producer, composer, songwriter, and arranger. He has been a producer for musicians including Chaka Khan, Alice Cooper, Christina Aguilera, Andrea Bocelli, Toni Braxton, Michael Bublé, Chicago, Natalie Cole, Celine Dion, Kenny G, Josh Groban, Brandy Norwood, Whitney Houston, Jennifer Lopez, Kenny Rogers, Seal, Rod Stewart, Jake Zyrus, Donna Summer, Olivia Newton-John, Madonna, Mary J. Blige, Michael Jackson, Peter Cetera, Cheryl Lynn, Blake Shelton and Barbra Streisand. Foster has won 16 Grammy Awards from 47 nominations. He was the chairman of Verve Records from 2012 to 2016.

Carole Bayer Sager American singer-songwriter

Carole Bayer Sager is an American lyricist, singer, songwriter, painter, and New York Times best-selling author.

Alberto Testa (lyricist) Italian lyricist

Alberto Testa was an Italian composer, lyricist, singer, and writer for television.

Contents

History

Originally "The Prayer" was recorded as two separate solo versions, Dion's in English and Bocelli's in Italian. They appeared on the Quest for Camelot soundtrack in May 1998. The duet was included on albums by both artists, released a few months later on Sogno and These Are Special Times. Bocelli sung original Italian while Dion translated into English. The song won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song from the 1998 film Quest for Camelot, the second win in a row for a Celine Dion song. In that film, Dion sang it as a solo with slightly different lyrics. It was also nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1999 and a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals in 2000. Dion performed it with Bocelli at both ceremonies.

The Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song was awarded for the first time in 1962 and has been awarded annually since 1965 by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association. The award is presented to the songwriters of a song written specifically for a motion picture. The performers of the song are not credited, unless they also have a writing or co-writing credit.

Celine Dion Canadian singer

Céline Marie Claudette Dion is a Canadian singer. Born into a large family from Charlemagne, Quebec, she emerged as a teen star in her homeland with a series of French-language albums during the 1980s. She first gained international recognition by winning both the 1982 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival and the 1988 Eurovision Song Contest, where she represented Switzerland. After learning to speak English, she signed on to Epic Records in the United States. In 1990, Dion released her debut English-language album, Unison, establishing herself as a viable pop artist in North America and other English-speaking areas of the world.

The Academy Award for Best Original Song is one of the awards given annually to people working in the motion picture industry by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). It is presented to the songwriters who have composed the best original song written specifically for a film. The performers of a song are not credited with the Academy Award unless they contributed either to music, lyrics or both in their own right. The songs that are nominated for this award are performed during the ceremony and before this award is presented.

It was also featured on Dion's compilation The Collector's Series, Volume One (2000) and greatest hits My Love: Ultimate Essential Collection (2008). A re-recorded solo version by Celine Dion (renamed "A Mother's Prayer") appeared on her 2004 album Miracle . Dion performed "The Prayer" live during her Taking Chances Tour as a virtual duet with Bocelli on the screen; the performance was released in the Taking Chances World Tour: The Concert CD/DVD. The song appeared also on Bocelli's 2007 compilation The Best of Andrea Bocelli: Vivere . Dion joined Bocelli to perform the song in his Concerto: One Night in Central Park concert in 2011; the performance was subsequently released on CD and DVD. Both Dion and Bocelli have sung the song with other artists, and various other artists have recorded the song, either as a duet or a solo.

<i>The Collectors Series, Volume One</i> 2000 compilation album by Celine Dion

The Collector's Series, Volume One is a primarily English-language compilation album by Canadian singer Celine Dion, released by Columbia Records on 20 October 2000. The album was renamed Tout en amour in France. It features "The Power of the Dream", the song that Dion performed during the opening ceremony of the 1996 Summer Olympics. The album has sold over three million copies worldwide.

<i>My Love: Essential Collection</i> 2008 greatest hits album by Celine Dion

My Love: Essential Collection is a greatest hits album by Canadian recording artist Celine Dion. It was released by Columbia Records on 24 October 2008 as the follow up to her previous English-language compilation, All the Way... A Decade of Song (1999). Before releasing My Love: Essential Collection, Dion had already sold over 200 million albums worldwide. In the album's liner notes, she dedicated this collection of songs, recorded between 1990 and 2008, to her fans who supported her throughout the years. My Love: Essential Collection was released as a single disc, consisting of Dion's most successful singles, including: "My Heart Will Go On", "Because You Loved Me" and "The Power of Love". The two-disc edition, entitled My Love: Ultimate Essential Collection has been further expanded to include more hits and rare songs that have not previously appeared on her albums. Both editions include one new track, "There Comes a Time". The album wasn't released in Japan because Sony Music Entertainment decided to issue different compilation there, Complete Best.

<i>Miracle</i> (Celine Dion album) 2004 studio album by Celine Dion

Miracle is the ninth English-language studio album by Canadian singer Celine Dion, released by Columbia on 11 October 2004. It is a concept album credited to Dion and Australian photographer Anne Geddes. The songs were produced by David Foster. Miracle topped the chart in Canada and Belgium Wallonia, and reached top five in the United States, United Kingdom, France and the Netherlands. It was certified Platinum in the US, and Gold in various countries.

The original version of "The Prayer" failed to chart on the US Billboard Hot 100, but was very popular on the adult contemporary charts in both Canada and the United States, peaking at number 6 and number 22 respectively. It has also become popular during Christmas, weddings and, in some cases, funerals and religious services.

<i>Billboard</i> Hot 100 Song chart in U.S

The Billboard Hot 100 is the music industry standard record chart in the United States for songs, published weekly by Billboard magazine. Chart rankings are based on sales, radio play, and online streaming in the United States.

Christmas holiday originating in Christianity, usually celebrated on December 25 (in the Gregorian or Julian calendars)

Christmas is an annual festival commemorating the birth of Jesus Christ, observed primarily on December 25 as a religious and cultural celebration among billions of people around the world. A feast central to the Christian liturgical year, it is preceded by the season of Advent or the Nativity Fast and initiates the season of Christmastide, which historically in the West lasts twelve days and culminates on Twelfth Night; in some traditions, Christmastide includes an octave. Christmas Day is a public holiday in many of the world's nations, is celebrated religiously by a majority of Christians, as well as culturally by many non-Christians, and forms an integral part of the holiday season centered around it.

Critical reception

Paul Verna from Billboard called this song a "gorgeous duet". [2] Chuck Taylor from Billboard reviewed "The Prayer", calling it "a breathtaking, ultra-lush song, and the tour de force combination of Dion and Bocelli [which] will send a half-dozen chills up your spine". Although he felt that the song is "an unorthodox track for the radio," Taylor called it "affecting," "heartwarming," "absolutely exquisite" and "one of Dion's most radiant performances ever". [3]

Track listing

1999 North American promotional CD maxi single

  1. "The Prayer" (Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli) – 4:29
  2. "The Prayer" (Celine Dion) – 2:48
  3. "The Prayer" (Andrea Bocelli) – 4:10

Personnel

Andrea Bocelli Italian tenor and singer-songwriter

Andrea Bocelli is an Italian opera singer, songwriter, and record producer. Celine Dion has said that "if God would have a singing voice, he must sound a lot like Andrea Bocelli," and David Foster, a record producer, often describes Bocelli's voice as the most beautiful in the world.

William Ross is an American composer, orchestrator, arranger, conductor and music director. He has worked with a large array of artists and musicians, from famous Hollywood composers John Williams, Alan Silvestri, John Powell, Michael Giacchino, Klaus Badelt, and Michael Kamen, to pop music icons and best-sellers such as Barbra Streisand, Celine Dion, Andrea Bocelli, Josh Groban, Laura Pausini, Whitney Houston, Kenny G, Michael Jackson, David Foster, Quincy Jones, Babyface and Sting.

Humberto Gatica American record producer

Humberto Gatica is a Chilean-born American record producer, music mixer, audio engineer and a long-time collaborator with producer David Foster. He is a 16-time Grammy Award Winner.

Charts

Celine Dion and Josh Groban version

"The Prayer (Live)"
ThePrayerdigital.jpg
Single by Celine Dion and Josh Groban
Released12 February 2008
Format Digital download
Genre Classical crossover
Songwriter(s)
Celine Dion singles chronology
"A World to Believe In"
(2008)
"The Prayer (Live)"
(2008)
"Alone"
(2008)

Celine Dion first performed "The Prayer" live with Josh Groban in 1999, when then 17-year old Groban filled in for Andrea Bocelli at rehearsal for the 41st Annual Grammy Awards. Nine years later, the two performed the song during her CBS TV special That's Just the Woman in Me , aired on 15 February 2008. This version was released as a music download in the United States and Canada two days earlier. It proved to be much more successful than the original, entering the Billboard Hot 100 at number 70. It also appeared on a few other Billboard charts: Pop 100 at number 50, Hot Digital Songs at number 32 and Hot Digital Tracks at number 29. The single has sold 37,531 copies in its first week in the US. In Canada, the song peaked at number 37 on the Canadian Hot 100 and number 19 on the Canadian Top Digital Downloads. [11]

Track listing

2008 North American digital single

  1. "The Prayer" (Celine Dion and Josh Groban) (live) – 4:38

Charts

Chart (2008)Peak
position
Canada (Canadian Hot 100) [12] 37
US Billboard Hot 100 [13] 70
US Pop 100 ( Billboard ) [14] 50

Anthony Callea version

"The Prayer"
The Prayer Anthony Callea cover art.jpg
Single by Anthony Callea
from the album Anthony Callea
Released19 December 2004
Format CD single
Genre Classical crossover
Length4:16
Label Sony BMG
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) John Forman
Anthony Callea singles chronology
"The Prayer"
(2004)
"Rain" / "Bridge over Troubled Water"
(2005)
Music video
"The Prayer" on YouTube

Callea first performed this song during Australian Idol 2004, in the week of 'contestants choice'. He received a standing ovation for this performance and the "Grand Royal Touchdown" from judge Mark Holden. He would go on to be runner-up in this series.

At the completion of the show, Callea was signed to Sony BMG, and he released "The Prayer" as his debut single.

It was released in Australia on 19 December 2004 and debuted at number 1 on the ARIA Charts. It stayed there for five weeks and was certified 4x platinum by ARIA. It became the fastest-selling single by any Australian artist, and was the second highest selling single in Australia within the 2000's overall, and for an Australian artist. [15] [16] The song was included on Callea's debut album Anthony Callea .

Callea has performed "The Prayer" at numerous concerts as well as the Carols by Candlelight in Melbourne. In 2006, he performed the song in front of Queen Elizabeth at a Commonwealth Day Service [17] He also performed it as a duet with Tina Arena on her Symphony of Life CD/DVD, released in 2012.

Track list

"The Prayer" was released as a two-track CD single [18]

  1. The Prayer (4.16)
  2. The Prayer (Sterling remix) (4:03)

Video

The video includes excerpts of Callea recording the song and was released in 2004. [19]

Charts

Weekly charts

Chart (2004)Peak
position
Australia (ARIA) [20] 1

Year-end charts

Chart (2004)Position
Australia (ARIA) [21] 82
Chart (2005)Position
Australia (ARIA) [22] 1

Decade-end charts

Chart (2000–09)Position
Australia (ARIA) [16] 2

Certifications

RegionCertification Certified units/sales
Australia (ARIA) [23] 4× Platinum280,000^

^shipments figures based on certification alone

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