Glee: A Celebration

Barry Quinn
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Glee bows out this weekend in a two part finale titled ‘2009’ and ‘Dreams Come True’. It’s final run of episodes has matched its style across its six seasons: some sensational episodes, some controversial and daring storylines, a host of new characters, and some abysmal hours of television. It’s safe to say that Glee has had an pretty uneven trajectory.

It would have been very easy to dedicate an article to the negatives about Glee (and trust us, there’s an amply amount of them!) but Vada is going to do something different. Below you’ll find a selection of our best performances from the show, and reasons why.

f.u.n. – We Are Young (performed by the New Directions)

Not only was this a brilliant performance, it helped to throw both f.u.n. and their song ‘We Are Young’ into the spotlight – beforehand not many had heard of either. But now f.u.n. are regarded as a brilliant band, and it’s all due to Glee’s performance. Give it a listen below, and be reminded why you fell in love with f.u.n. in the first place. This is a perfect example of the shows ensemble coming together in a way which worked.

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Hairspray – I Know Where I’ve Been (Performed by Unique)

It’s message, Alex Newell’s silky tones, and those final notes. I may be biased here, but for me ‘I Know Where I’ve Been’ is the best solo performed on Glee. Alex Newell is going to have a fine future ahead of him, I am certain of that. This performance is simply gorgeous, backed with the affirmation of love for Sheldon and a 200-strong quite of transpeople. For this alone Glee needs to be applauded.

Funny Girl – Don’t Rain on My Parade (Performed by Rachel)

This is Rachel’s best solo. Lea Michele simply belts out the notes to produce a gorgeous rendition of this song, cementing her instantly as one to watch. This made Rachel the standout performer in Glee, and rightfully so. No other performance for her has quite come close.

Journey – Don’t Stop Believing (Performed by Rachel, Finn, Artie, Kurt, Tina & Mercedes)

No list of Glee’s greatest songs would be complete without this. This performance made Glee. It still sounds fresh, hearing it six years later. Reportedly it’ll feature in ‘2009’, so prepare for chills and feels as Finn reappears. This performance, back in the shows Pilot, instantly saw the chemistry sizzle between Rachel and Finn. Glee will be remembered, for this performance if nothing else. Those sweeping arm raises are iconic.

Fleetwood Mac – Landslide (Performed by Holly, Santana &  Brittany)

Oh the feels. It’s here in which Santana realises her love for Brittany, and it is simply beautiful to behold. Naya is brilliant here. I wish the show had found reason to have Holly stick around, because she was just a delight!

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The Band Perry – If I Die Young (Performed by Santana)

Any song from ‘The Quarterback’ could have made this list, but it’s Santana’s performance which stood out for me. Naya wasn’t performing during this song: every emotion was real, and that made her break down all the crueler. This is both a hard performance and hard episode to sit through, but it shows how much love the cast had for Cory Monteith.

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes – Home (Performed by the New Directions & Alumni)

Accompanied by one of Sue’s trademark snarky remarks, ‘Home’ is the perfect performance to cement (well, kinda) the new-newbies. Aside from Unique’s stunning ‘I Know Where I’ve Been’ this is, to me, the only memorable song from the shortened sixth season thus far. It gives you feels, and it really is a brilliant cover of this track.

Journey – Faithfully (Performed by Rachel & Finn)

‘I love you,’ Finn says to Rachel, and just like that we’re back in 2010. This is the quintessential performance by Rachel and Finn, and perhaps their most famous duet. This song is as much for these characters as it is for the viewer, and even after these years we still get chills watching it back.

About Barry Quinn

Barry Quinn is an English Language and Literature graduate and a Creative Writer MA studier. He is an aspiring creative and professional writer and is currently in the process of writing his first novel. His writing blog can be viewed here: You can follow him on Twitter at: @mrbarryquinn