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Dreams to Dream is a song by James Horner and Will Jennings, based on a short instrumental piece from An American Tail (which can be heard in the Orphan Alley scene), appearing in the 1991 animated film An American Tail: Fievel Goes West. There are two versions of the song in the film, one with Cathy Cavadini performing Tanya's version and the other being Linda Ronstadt performing the finale version, which includes extra lyrics. Released as a single on MCA in late 1991, the song climbed to #13 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart but did not cross over to the Hot 100. The music video features Ronstadt performing the song intercut with clips from Fievel Goes West. The composition was nominated in 1992 for a Golden Globe award for Best Original Song in a Motion Picture.

In the film, Tanya sings this song as she's performing chores for her family. Cat R. Waul overhears her and becomes captivated by her voice, bringing her to his saloon to be a singer. This song is part of Tanya's trademark.


Opening Monologue (Fievel and Friends Album Only)

Fievel: Dreams? I always had dreams. Wonderful dreams. Dreams can take you anywhere, and you can be anything you want to be in dreams. The trick is to make some of those dreams come true. Listen while my sister Tanya tells you all about some of her dreams.


I lose my way, no one cares.  

Tanya sings "Dreams to Dream"

The words I say, no one hears.  

My life it seems, is a world of dreams.  

Deep in the night, you'll find me.  

Dream and you're right behind me.  

Stay if you will stay  

We'll dream the night away.  

Dreams to dream in the dark of the night  

When the world goes wrong, I can still make it right  

I can see so far in my dreams  

I'll follow my dreams  

Until they come true.  

There is a star waiting to guide us  

Shining inside us when we close our eyes.

Come with me, you will see what I mean,  

There's a world inside no one else ever sees.  

You will go so far in my dreams,  

Somewhere in my dreams,  

Your dreams will come true.  

Don’t let go, if you stay close to me

In my dreams tonight, you will see what I see

Dreams to dream, as near as can be

Inside you and me, that always come true,

Inside you and me, that always come true.


  • The movie version, sung by Cathy Cavadini as Tanya, leaves out the first seven lines.
  • According to her website, Cathy Cavadini was chosen to voice Tanya by James Horner himself, who liked her singing voice. A previous voice actress had already voiced Tanya, and had to be dubbed over by Cavadini.
  • The song was covered by Vikki Watson in An American Tail: A Musical Adventure With Fievel and Friends.
  • The song is sung by Cathy Cavadini again in the Fievel's American Tails episode "The Legend of Mouse Hollow".
  • The only time the song was performed without Tanya's involvement at all was in the An American Tail Live Show, where it is sung by Fievel and Tiger.
  • As has been noted many times, there is a hidden obscene image for one frame during the song, when Cat R. Waul picks Tanya up in his hands. It is possible that either it could perhaps have been an accident while in production or it was a part of the collected dust from 35mm printings. This image can even be seen on DVD's of the movie. However, the Blu-ray removed that image to avoid anymore controversies. That edit also occurs on the Peacock streaming as well as Discovery Family and Freeform broadcasts.
    • A similar suggestive reference occurred in The Treasure of Manhattan Island, as a painting on the Mousekewitz's wall contained a female figure shown aside a large animal in an inappropriate manner, which the figure is only shown twice while being obscured in all other shots (showing half containing the animal). Without question, this remained uncut on all home releases. Yet, the picture is omitted from the finale.
An American Tail: Fievel Goes West
Characters Papa MousekewitzMama MousekewitzTanya MousekewitzFievel MousekewitzYasha MousekewitzTigerWylie BurpCat R. WaulT.R. ChulaCactus Cat GangMiss KittyOne EyeFeloniusGeronimouseHawk (Fievel Goes West)OwlScorpion (Fievel Goes West)
Locations New YorkGreen River
Songs Way Out WestDreams to DreamThe Girl You Left Behind
Spinoffs An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (Comic Book)An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (Video Game)An American Tail: A Musical Adventure With Fievel and Friends