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Defying Gravity is the finale for Wicked's first act, when Elphaba, who, until now, has seen the Wizard of Oz as a heroic figure who can give her life some noble direction, discovers that he is not at all what he seems. The Wizard's regime, in fact, is waging a propaganda campaign against the Animals of Oz (including Dr. Dillamond), who have been oppressed to such a degree that they lose their powers of speech or worse, never learn to speak at all. (Dr. Dillamond, for instance, initially starts to lose his speech in "Something Bad" when he pronounces bad as 'baaaad,' bleating like an actual goat). Realizing this, and despite Glinda's attempts to dissuade her, Elphaba vows to do everything in her power to fight the Wizard and his sinister plans. She sings of how she wants to live without limits, going against the rules that others have set for her, trying to convince Glinda to follow her, by a moment, without success. During the song, Elphaba, apparently cornered by those who are hunting her, enchants a broomstick to levitate and, in the last verse, rises from the stage and levitates above the angered Citizens of Oz, who try in vain to "bring her down."

The song is widely regarded as being the musical's signature song, although the songs "Popular" and For Good have lived up to its name as well. The musical has generally received thunderous applause after this song due to the song's status as a showstopper.

The song touches on elements from some earlier themes, with Elphaba singing "Unlimited!" as sung in "The Wizard and I" and the Citizens of Oz again singing that "No One Mourns The Wicked."

Alternate  Recordings

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Idina Menzel, having reprised her role as Elphaba in the West End production of Wicked in 2006, released a remixed "pop mainstream" version of the song as a single. It can be heard on her official website and purchased on the iTunes Music Store. The remix of "Defying Gravity" was also the anthem at the 2007 Gay Pride Parade and Festival in Los Angeles; it appears on the official CD from the event.

Kerry Ellis, who replaced Menzel as Elphaba in the West End production of Wicked, recorded a rock version of the song in 2008 as part of a single, Wicked in Rock, designed as a teaser for her debut album. Wicked in Rock is available at the Gershwin Theatre in New York City and on iTunes (Defying Gravity only). It also appears on her debut album, Anthem. 


As well as Menzel and Ellis, London's  Elphabas, Louise Dearman, and Rachel Tucker recorded their own versions of the song for their albums respectively. 

International Recordings

  • A German-language version of "Defying Gravity," called "Frei und schwerelos," was recorded on 21 November 2007 by the Stuttgart, Germany cast of Wicked featuring Willemijn Verkaik as Elphaba and Lucy Scherer as Glinda
  • The Japanese cast of Wicked also recorded a version of Defying Gravity, "Jiyuu O Motomete," which again was loosely based around the original song and translates to "Seeking Freedom.
  • Ik lach om zwaartekracht" is the Dutch version of the song, which translates to "I Laugh at Gravity."
  • The Spanish version is called "En Contra de la Gravedad", which translates to "Against Gravity."  
  • "Painovoiman Murtamaan" is the Finnish version, which translates to "Break the Gravity."
  • The Danish version is called Mine Vinger Bær, which translates to "My Wings Carry."
  • There is a Korean version called "Jungryeokeul Beoseona", which translates to "Away from the Gravity".
  • The Brazilian version is called "Desafiar a Gravidade" which translates to "To Defy The Gravity".


(Spoken) Elphaba, why couldn't you've stayed calm for once instead of flying off the handle!
(Sung) I hope you're happy
I hope you're happy now
I hope you're happy how you hurt your cause forever
I hope you think you're clever!

I hope you're happy!
I hope you're happy too!
I hope you're proud how you would grovel in submission
To feed your own ambition

So though I can't imagine how
I hope you're happy
Right now

(Spoken) Elphie, listen to me. Just, say you're sorry.
(Sung) You can still be with The Wizard
What you've worked and waited for
You can have all you ever wanted

(Spoken) I know.
(Sung) But I don't want it
(Spoken) No.
(Sung) I can't want it anymore

Something has changed within me
Something is not the same
I'm through with playing by
The rules of someone else's game

Too late for second guessing
Too late to go back to sleep
It's time to trust my instincts
Close my eyes and leap

It's time to try
Defying gravity
I think I'll try
Defying gravity
And you can't pull me down!

Can't I make you understand
You're having delusions of grandeur

I'm through accepting limits
'Cause someone says they're so
Some things I cannot change
But till I try I'll never know

Too long I've been afraid of losing love
I guess I've lost
Well if that's love
It comes at much too high a cost!

I'd sooner buy
Defying gravity
Kiss me goodbye I'm
Defying gravity
And you can't pull me down!

(Spoken) Glinda, come with me. Think of what we could do, together.
(Sung) Unlimited, together we're unlimited
Together we'll be the greatest team there's ever been
Glinda, dreams the way we've planned 'em.

If we work in tandem

There's no fight we cannot win
Just you and I
Defying gravity
With you and I
Defying gravity

They'll never bring us down
(Spoken) Well, are you coming?

I hope you're happy
Now that you're choosing this

(Spoken) You too.
(Sung) I hope it brings you bliss.

I really hope you get it
And you don't live to regret it
I hope you're happy in the end
I hope you're happy my friend

So if you care to find me
Look to the Western Sky
As someone told me lately
"Everyone deserves a chance to fly"

And if I'm flying solo
At least I'm flying free
To those who ground me
Take a message back from me!

Tell them how
I am defying gravity
I'm flying high and
Defying gravity
And soon I'll match them in renown

And nobody in all of Oz
No Wizard that there is or was
Is ever gonna bring me down!

I hope you're happy!

Guards/Citizens of Oz:
Look at her she's Wicked!
Get her!

Bring me down!!

Guards/Citizens of Oz:
No one mourns the wicked
So we've got to bring her

Oh ah ah ah ah!

Guards/Citizens of Oz:



Defying Gravity-0


Defying Gravity -full- - Olivier Awards 2014 - Willemijn Verkaik

Willemijn Verkaik singing Defying Gravity at the Olivier Awards 2014 in London.



Defying Gravity Teal Wicks & Katie Rose Clarke 5-14-11-1


12 (Best performance ever!)

Rachel Tucker singing Defying Gravity in 2012 on the West End


Willemijn Verkaik - Ik lach om zwaartekracht


Kerry Ellis - (FINAL) Defying Gravity (...again) 25.10.2014

Kerry Ellis' Final Defying Gravity - Wicked London 25/10/2014


Kerry Ellis - Defying Gravity (17th June 2008) First on Broadway-0


Wicked Broadway Defying Gravity Christine Dwyer Jenni Barber Video-0


Donna Vivino and Ali Mauzey - Defying Gravity

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