Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances

Leading Actor
Leading Actor
If you were asked by Broadwayworld to submit your ten favorite Broadway vocal performances ever (from cast recordings or musical film soundtracks) what would they be? Include explanations if you'd like :)

This was hard but mine would be (in no particular order):
1. Linda Eder - A New Life (Jekyll & Hyde)
2. Sutton Foster - Astonishing (Little Women)
3. Original A Chorus Line Cast - At The Ballet
4. Ramin Karimloo - Til I Hear You Sing (Love Never Dies)
5. Patti Lupone - Rainbow High (Evita)
6. Celisse Henderson - Learn Your Lessons Well (Godspell)
7. Raul Esparza - Being Alive (Company)
8. Mandy Patinkin & Bernadette Peters - Move On (Sunday In The Park With George)
9. Barbra Streisand - Before The Parade Passes By (Hello Dolly)
10. Nancy Opel - It's A Privilege To Pee (Urinetown)

Honorable Mention

Tituss Burgess - Under The Sea (Little Mermaid)

Updated On: 1/18/14 at 11:35 PM
Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
1. Aaron Tveit - I'm Alive (Next To Normal)
2. Robert Cuccioli - Confrontation (Jekyll & Hyde)
3. Lea Salonga - I'd Give My Life For You (Miss Saigon)
4. Betty Buckley - Memory (Cats)
5. Cast of Hairspray - You Can't Stop The Beat (Hairspray)
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Broadway Star
1. Barbra Streisand - "The Music That Makes Me Dance"
2. Tammy Grimes - "Home Sweet Heaven"
3. Barbara Cook - "Glitter And Be Gay"
4. Sutton Foster - "Gimme Gimme"
5. Angela Lansbury - "Me and My Town"
6. Barbara Harris - "What Did I Have That I Don't Have?"
7. Karen Morrow - "I've Got Everything I Want"
8. Liza Minnelli - "Sing Happy"
9. Rachel Bay Jones - "Kind of Woman"
10.Bernadette Peters - "Moonshine Lullaby"
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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
In no particular order. Sorry I needed more than 10, and some are from concerts.

Betty Buckley - Everyday a Little Death
Diana DeGarmo - Easy to Be Hard
Alli Mauzey - Screw Loose
Adrienne Warren - Ain't No Party
Stephanie J. Block - The Writing on the Wall
Beth Leavel - As We stumble Along
Laura Benanti - On the Steps of the Palace
Patti Lupone - Rainbow High
Jeanette Bayardelle - I'm Here
Patti Cohenour - Moonfall
Betty Buckley - Eve Was Weak/How Those Boys Could Dance
Jan Maxwell - Could I Leave You?
Sherie Renee Scott - Still Hurting
Christiane Noll - Back to Before
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Leading Actor
Leading Actor
I just wrote the first ten that came to mind.

dolores gray - i say hello
ethel merman - hostess with the mostess
angela lansbury - rose's turn
juliet prowse, paula kelly,josephine blake - there's gotta be something better than this
dorothy collins - losing my mind
pearl bailey - so long dearie
jennifer holliday - and i am telling you
judi dench - cabaret
ethel shutta - broadway baby [scrabble album]
barbara cook - til there was you

And then a bunch of others that also deserve a place in the top 10 came to mind...

vivienne segal - bewitched
mary martin - a wonderful guy
diahann carroll - i never has seen snow
karen morrow - i had a ball
liza - a quiet thing
bernadette peters - sitpwg
christine ebersole - another winter in a summer town
laura benanti - model behaviour
patti lupone - invisible

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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
This is where I differ with most of the denizens of these here boards... I'm more impressed with clarity of emotion and character than vocal histrionics. Also, I always seem biased towards emotionally bonding with male performances, as a man myself, but then again these men have all yet to be mentioned.

Len Cariou - Epiphany
Dorothy Collins - Losing My Mind
William Daniels - Is Anybody There?
Victor Garber (and Patrick Cassidy) - The Ballad of Booth
Todd Graff - I Chose Right
Rex Harrison - I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face
Murray Head - Judas' Death
Jennifer Holliday - And I Am Telling You (I'm Not Going)
Brian Stokes Mitchell - Make Them Hear You
James Naughton & Gregg Edelman - You're Nothing Without Me

That last pair is just because it's the most stunning harmony I think I've ever heard. I just adore them on that chorus.
Words don't deserve that kind of malarkey. They're innocent, neutral, precise, standing for this, describing that, meaning the other, so if you look after them you can build bridges across incomprehension and chaos. But when they get their corners knocked off, they're no good anymore…I don't think writers are sacred, but words are. They deserve respect. If you get the right ones in the right order, you can nudge the world a little.
Updated On: 1/17/14 at 09:15 PM
Featured Actor
Featured Actor
1. Mandy Gonzalez - Breathe
2. Raul Esparza - Being Alive
3. Eden Espinoza - Defying Gravity
4. Fantasia - I'm Here
5. Aaron Tveit - Goodbye

Other Favs:
Eden Espinosa - Once Upon a Time
John Lloyd Young - Can't Take My Eyes Off of You
Krysta Rodriguez - Pulled
John Gallagher Jr - And Then There Were None
Lin-Manuel Miranda - Finale

Featured Actor
Featured Actor
Not surprisingly mine are mostly women, primarily from the 1960s. They're all from the Original Broadway Cast Recordings, in chronological order:

Helen Gallagher - I'm Glad I'm Leaving
Kaye Ballard - Lazy Afternoon
Nancy Andrews & Virginia Martin - Little Me
Inga Swenson - 110 In The Shade
Tammy Grimes - Faster Than Sound
John Cullum - On A Clear Day You Can See Forever
Barbara Harris - Here In Eden
Angela Lansbury - Kiss Her Now
Susan Watson - Somebody
Karen Akers - Be On Your Own

Updated On: 1/18/14 at 10:41 PM
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Broadway Star
Broadway Star
Marin Mazzie - Back to Before (Ragtime)
Norm Lewis - You Should Be Loved (Side Show)
Aaron Tveit - I'm Alive (Next to Normal)
Liz Calloway - Meadowlark (concert performance)
James Snyder - Soliloquy and If I Loved You (Goodspeed's Carousel)
Brian Stokes Mitchell - The Impossible Dream (Man of La Mancha) and Make Them Hear You (Ragtime)
Josh Groban - Anthem (RAH Chess concert)
Emily Skinner and Alice Ripley - Leave Me Alone (Side Show)
Jeremy Jordan - Santa Fe (Newsies)
Kelli O'Hara - The Only One (Far From Heaven)
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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
I can't tell whether we are doing lists of 5 or 10, but off the top of my head:

Ethel Merman, "Some People"
Barbara Cook, "Glitter and Be Gay"
Clamma Dale and Donnie Ray Albert, "Bess, You Is my Woman Now"
Dorothy Collins, "Losing My Mind"
Dean Jones, "Being Alive"
Len Cariou and Angela Lansbury, "A Little Priest"
John Raitt, "Soliloquy (from CAROUSEL)"
Lorraine Serabian, "Life Is"
Michael Rupert, "What More Can I Say?"
Stubby Kaye and Chorus, "Jubilation T. Cornpone"

Updated On: 1/18/14 at 11:00 PM
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Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#10
Posted: 1/17/14 at 11:12pm
1. Patti LuPone "Rainbow High"
2. OBC of N2N "You Don't Know/I Am"
3. Jennifer Holliday "And I Am Telling You"
4. Raul Esparza "Marry Me a Little"
5. Elena Roger "Lament"
6. Mandy Patinkin & Bernadette Peters "Move On"
7. Patti LuPone "Meadowlark"
8. OBC of Women on the Verge "On the Verge"
9. Norbert Leo Butz "Shiksa Goddess"
10. Dorothy Collins "Losing My Mind"
Updated On: 1/17/14 at 11:12 PM
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Broadway Legend
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#11
Posted: 1/17/14 at 11:34pm
No particular order:
- A New Life - Linda Eder (Jekyll & Hyde)
- I Will Never Leave You - Alice Ripley & Emily Skinner (Side Show)
- Gold - Linda Eder (Camille Claudel)
- Evermore Without You - Martin Crewes (Woman in White)
- I Can't Recall - James Barbour (A Tale of Two Cities)
- And I Am Telling You - Jennifer Holliday
- Into the Fire - Douglas Sills (The Scarlet Pimpernel)
- Home - Stephanie Mills (The Wiz)
- On the Street Where You Live - Linda Eder
- The Longer I Live - Tom Hewitt (Dracula)
- A New Life - Deborah Cox - Jekyll revival

And for a few without big belting:
- Somebody - Melissa Errico (Amour)
- As If We Never Said Goodbye - Elaine Paige (Sunset Blvd)
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Leading Actor
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#12
Posted: 1/17/14 at 11:35pm
@Gaveston I know Barbra did not. That's why I said "or musical film soundtracks." Believe me I know...and good manners are a great thing to acquire :)

Updated On: 1/17/14 at 11:35 PM
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Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#13
Posted: 1/17/14 at 11:38pm
Billy Porter: Land of Lola (Kinky Boots)
Matt Doyle: Role of a Lifetime (Bare)
Sutton Foster: Gimme Gimme (Thoroughly Modern Millie)
Barbra Streisand: Don't Rain on My Parade (Funny Girl)
Idina Menzel: Defying Gravity & No Good Deed (Wicked)
Constantine Maroulis: I Need to Know (Jekyll & Hyde)
Jeremy Jordan: Sante Fe (Newsies)
Laura Bell Bundy: So Much Better (Legally Blonde)
Elaine Paige: Anything Goes (Anything Goes)
Terrence Mann: If I Can't Love Her (Beauty and the Beast)
Elena Roger: Rainbow High (Evita)
Patti LuPone: Rose's Turn (Gypsy)
Katharine McPhee & Megan Hilty: Let Me Be Your Star (Bombshell)
Ramin Karimloo: 'Til I Hear You Sing (Love Never Dies)
Lea Salonga: Reflection (Mulan)
Liam Mower: Electricity (Billy Elliot)
Adam Pascal: One Song Glory (Rent)
Euan Morton: Stranger in This World (Taboo)
Hugh Jackman: Not the Boy Next Door (The Boy from Oz)
Donny Osmond: Close Every Door (Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat)
Patina Miller: Fabulous, Baby! (Sister Act)
Jennifer Holliday: And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going (Dreamgirls)
Andrew Rannells: I Believe (The Book of Mormon)
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Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#14
Posted: 1/18/14 at 10:22am
Lauren Ward - This Little Girl
Lauren Ward - My House
Marin Mazzie - Losing My Mind
Patti LuPone - Invisible
Anita Morris - A Call from the Vatican
I know you. I know you. I know you.
The Other One
Broadway Star
Broadway Star
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#15
Posted: 1/18/14 at 11:09am
Mr. Nowak: John Cullum is not a woman. Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances

I like this topic, and split my choices into three categories. The first is for performances I've seen, the second is for film versions, and the third is for cast recordings of shows I have not seen. I numbered them, but they really aren't in any particular order.

1)Mandy Patinkin: High Flying Adored, Evita
2)Mandy Patinkin: Sunday In The Park With George (all of it)
3)David Carroll: Anthem, Chess
4)Kristin Chenoweth: Promises, Promises
5)Dorothy Collins: Losing My Mind, Follies
6)Jonathan Groff: Where Do I Go? and I Got Life, Hair
7)Linda Hopkins: Walk Him Up, Purlie
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal PerformancesColm Wilkinson: Bring Him Home, Les Miserables
9)Paolo Szot: This Nearly Was Mine, South Pacific
10)Melba Moore: Purlie, Purlie

1)Gordon McCrae: If I Loved You (reprise), Carousel
2)Giorgio Tozzi: Some Enchanted Evening, South Pacific
3)Shirley Jones: Out of My Dreams, Oklahoma!
4)Muriel Smith: Bali Hai, South Pacific
5)Judy Garland: Over The Rainbow, The Wizard of Oz
6)Cheryl Barnes: Easy To Be Hard, Hair
7)Barbra Streisand: Before The Parade Passes By, Hello, Dolly
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal PerformancesHarve Presnell: They Call The Wind Maria, Paint Your Wagon
9)Liza Minnelli: Cabaret, Cabaret
10)Jim Bryant: Something's Coming, West Side Story

1)Alfred Drake, Richard Kiley & especially Doretta Morrow: And This Is My Beloved, Kismet
2)Julie Andrews: Before I Gaze At You Again, Camelot
3)Barbara Harris: What Did I Have That I Don't Have?, On A Clear Day You Can See Forever
4)Karen Morrow: I Had a Ball, I Had a Ball
5)Barbara Cook: (just about everything)
6)Leslie Uggams: My Own Morning, Hallelujah, Baby!
7)Dean Jones: Someone Is Waiting, Company
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal PerformancesSammy Davis, Jr.: Stick Around, Golden Boy
9)Nancy Andrews & Virginia Martin: Here's To Us and Little Me, Little Me
10)Judy Tyler: Everybody's Got A Home But Me, Pipe Dream

Broadway Legend
Broadway Legend
Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#16
Posted: 1/18/14 at 12:26pm
The OP said 5 but the title said 10 so guess it does not matter - lol, going to update my list to include 5 more.
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Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances#17
Posted: 1/18/14 at 12:49pm
No order (and don't judge me, I've only just started getting into musical theatre in 2011!); I'm also like jnb, I get more moved with the emotion than the actual singing (most of the time).

1. Bernadette Peters: We Do Not Belong Together from Sunday In the Park With George
2. Mandy Patinkin: Every song in Sunday In the Park With George, but especially Beautiful
3. I have this weird fascination with Madeleline Kahn's voice in I've Got It All from On the Twentieth Century
4. Barbra Streisand: I'd Rather Be Blue Over You from Funny Girl (Original Soundtrack Recording). I just LOVE her voice in this one particular song, I have no idea why.
5. Kristin Chenoweth: Knowing When to Leave from Promises, Promises
6. Bernadette Peteres: Lament from Into the Woods
7. Julie Andrews: I Could Have Danced All Night from My Fair Lady
6. Barbara Cook: Will He Like Me from She Loves Me
7. Patti Lupone: Rose's Turn from Gypsy
8. Alice Ripley in everything from Next to Normal
9. Donna Murphy: I Read from Passion
10. The ENTIRE Original London Cast album of Les Mis.

And Kristin Chenoweth singing Bring Him Home from Les Mis, I can't help it, but it's the only version that I've heard that actually brought me to tears. Actually Cheno's whole "Let Yourself Go" album as well if that counts.

Updated On: 1/19/14 at 12:49 PM
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Leading Actor
Thanka @yankeefan7 i'll edit that
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Leading Actor
Oh goodness, what an awful error! No, he certainly is not a woman. It's fixed now. Hope I didn't offend him.
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@Gaveston I know Barbra did not (sing "Before the Parade Passes By" on Broadway). That's why I said "or musical film soundtracks." Believe me I know...and good manners are a great thing to acquire :)

sephyr, you are absolutely correct and I can only blame my poor reading comprehension skills on early-onset Alzheimer's. I truly regret the error and have removed it from my original post.
1. Billy Porter - Grease
2. Betty Buckley - Carrie
3. Alli Mauzey - Screw Loose
4. Brian Stoke Mitchell - Ragtime
5. Audra McDonald -Ragtime
6. Tituss Burgess - Little Mermaid
7. Gavin Creel - Millie
8. Barbara Streisand - Funny Girl
9. Emily Skinner and Alice Ripley - Side Show
10. Idina Menzel - Lippa's Wild Party

Hn honorable mention to John Treacy Egan singing This Is the Moment in concert. It's stupid good, but he never did it on stage/recorded it.
Also Alison Jiear in just about anything but especially Hot Mikado on the west end.
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What a great thread! Thought I'd revive it.

10. Ethel Merman - Mr. Goldstone I Love You

9. Ken Page - Let There Be

8. Julie Andrews - I Could Have Danced All Night

7. Ezio Pinza - Some Enchanted Evening

6. Alfred Drake - Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'

5. Jerry Orbach - Try to Remember

4. Angela Lansbury - I Don't Want to Know

3. Barbara Cook - Glitter and Be Gay

2. Ethel Merman - Rose's Turn

1. Larry Kert - Something's Coming (he's actually pretty fantastic throughout the whole album)

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I can't believe I missed this thread the first time through. I've added performances I've seen, even if they're not, to my knowledge, on a recording (except possibly a You Tube bootleg). In no particular order:

1) Gaylea Byrne in Man of La Mancha, singing the cynical song about how she is not Dulcinea but "Aldonza the whore." Her vocal power and raw emotion made her performance searing.

2) Rex Harrison in My Fair Lady (London, NY, and film), in Why Can't a Woman be more like a Man and Let a Woman in Your Life. He couldn't sing a note, which is why he spoke the songs in time to the music. However, he was so convincing that he came across as a cynical misogynist instead of the often-married "Sexy Rexy."

3) Norm Lewis in The Phantom of the Opera, performing Music of the Night and the final lair scene. Not only is his voice incredible, but his version of MOTN is one of the most seductive things I've scene on stage. His final lair humanized the Phantom to an incredible degree.

4) Don't laugh, but Gerard Butler's performance of Music of the Night on the POTO soundtrack. Obviously, his voice leaves a lot to be desired, especially when compared to the stage Phantoms' voices. However, thanks to his catlike movements as the Phantom and his facial expressions, his version of MOTN is one of the most seductive performances of MOTN I've seen, and one of the most seductive scenes I've ever seen on film. I felt as if he were singing to me.

5) Zero Mostel's and Herschel Bernardi's performances in Fiddler on the Roof of "If I were a Rich Man." They perfectly captured the longing of a simple man in a humorous, but moving way.

6) Idina Menzel's performance of "Let it Go" in Frozen. Let's hear it for kick-ass queens as a role model for little girls.

7) Idina Menzel's performance of "I Hate You" in If/Then perfectly captures the character's emotional agony.

Your Top 10 Favorite Bway Vocal Performances The company's performance of "The Moment Explodes" in If/Then. Let's just say it didn't do anything to help me get over my fear of flying.

9) Richard Burton's and Julie Andrews' performances of "What do the Simple Folk Do?" on the Camelot original cast album. They perfectly bring out the emotions of two characters spiraling into despair but trying desperately to save themselves and each other.

10) Colm Wilkinson's performance of just about anything from "Les Miz." Now that's a character who knows how to make lemonade from lemons!

Audrey, the Phantom Phanatic, who nonetheless would rather be Jean Valjean, who knew how to make lemonade out of lemons.