11 Videos Of Colleen Ballinger Singing, Because Miranda Is Just An Act
While it's fun to cringe at the silly artistic choices that Miranda Sings makes in Haters Back Off or on Youtube, it's important to note that Colleen Ballinger has an incredible singing voice IRL. Her character is just an act, and her talent and experience helps to inform all of Miranda's bad choices. She's literally doing everything you're not supposed to do as a vocalist. You can hear Ballinger sing "Defying Gravity" from Wicked both as Miranda in the pilot of the Netflix series and then for real over the closing credits — and it's kind of everything.
Though she plays an over-the-top untalented singer on Youtube and on Haters Back Off, Ballinger was classically trained as a vocal performance major at Azusa Pacific University. She's even posted a clip of herself singing opera before. In an interview with Seth Rudetsky for Playbill, Ballinger explains the origins of Miranda. The character was originally inspired by over-confident aspiring Youtube stars that Ballinger discovered online, as well as girls she encountered in college. "Sectionals [in vocal music classes] were always so funny," she said, "because they'd be like 'if you can't reach a note, you just reach your eyebrows really high and stretch your head you'll be able to hit it.' People told me that!" Ridiculous advice like that inspired "Free Voice Lesson," one of the first Miranda Sings video to achieve viral fame.
It's clear that both Miranda Sings and Ballinger are fans of musical theatre. She even made a video with another famous Miranda and Broadway enthusiast, to put it extremely lightly, Lin-Manuel Miranda, back in 2010. She posts a lot of videos dueting with herself as Miranda, so Miranda Sings fans probably know the difference between the two already. That said, here are some videos of Colleen Ballinger singing just as herself.
1. "Love Is An Open Door" from Frozen
Come for the Disney-perfect singing, stay for this adorable four-year-old!
2. "Summer In Ohio" from The Last Five Years
Basically, Ballinger is just like all of my vocal major friends from college. While this video is from a production of L5Y, I'm pretty sure I heard every song from this show in a recital or cabaret before ever seeing the show itself or the movie with Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan.
3. "Stars And The Moon" from Songs For A New World
If you've never heard this song before, prepare to be belting it in the shower for the rest of your life.
4. "My Party Dress" by Kerrigan & Lowdermilk
She's doing a different character voice, which is nothing like Miranda but also super funny.
5. "Take Me Or Leave Me" from Rent
Can we talk about how, in 2009, Ariana Grande was best known as being "from 13 The Musical" — that's incredible. It doesn't even feel that long ago.
6. "Taylor The Latte Boy"
Another musical theatre favorite, even though it isn't from a musical. Blame Kristin Chenoweth.
7. "Heart And Music" from A New Brain
She's technically singing the musical theatre version of "back up," but I really like this song.
8. "If Momma Was Married" from Gypsy
This Sondheim duet is sure to get stuck in your head.
9. "Winter Song"
This music video with Evynne Hollens will help you deal with the dropping temperatures, for sure.
10. Britney Spears Medley
Ballinger is a Youtuber sans persona too, and often sings her own songs there as well.
11. "Mean Comments: An Original Song"
Finally, a song that Ballinger has sung in concerts recently. It also demonstrates a key similarity between Ballinger and Miranda. According to the Playbill interview, Ballinger enjoys that Miranda gets angry comments directed at her fictional character, but it's no fun when rudeness is directed at you IRL. Based on the title of her Netflix series, Miranda doesn't love having haters either — but both of them embrace that, which is what Haters Back Off demonstrates so well.