Meaning of “Que Será, Será (Whatever Will Be, Will Be)”by Doris Day

Here is a song that blew up well over half a century ago! But even before that, dating back to the 16th century, we have record of the timeless wisdom this track is based on – “que será, será” (what will be, will be) – being utilized in a number of languages.

 In this classic song, American actress and singer Doris Day, plays the role of a woman who is recollecting on the doubts and uncertainties present during different stages of her life. Indeed this track was originally featured in a 1956 film “The Man Who Knew Too Much”, with Doris Day acting as one of the main characters in the movie.

This song goes through three stages. The first stage sees Doris as a young girl questioning her mother pertaining to what her future would be like. In the second stage, she is now an adult, and she faces her honeybun with the same types of inquiries. Finally, in the third stage, it is now rather her own children asking her how fortunate they would be in life. And all three of these settings end in the same way, with the answerer replying “que será, será – what will be, will be”.

Facts about “Que Será, Será”

  •  “Que Será, Será” was written by American songwriters Ray Evans and Jay Livingston. Livingston composed the music whereas Evans wrote the song’s lyrics.
  • The song, which was released as a single, originally came out in 1956.
  • The label responsible for the production and release of “Que Será, Será” was Columbia Records.
  • This song was written at the request of Alfred Hitchcock, the man behind the film it was featured in, since he felt that Doris Day, being a singer, indeed needed a song to sing in the movie.
  • Even though this proved to be her biggest hit, Doris Day was initially reluctant to add her vocals to this song due to deeming it too childlike. Interestingly enough, this classic went on to become the most successful work of her entire career. Day even went on to use the song as the theme song of her sitcom (The Doris Day Show).
  • “Que Será, Será” won the 1956 Oscar for Best Song.

7 Responses

  1. Ilyas Mohsib says:

    a wonderful song etc

  2. Ilyas Mohsin says:

    A wonderful idea and a great song indeed.

  3. Lewis says:

    This song, although cute, gives one of the worst possible messages that you could tell a young person. Basically it’s saying don’t try to change anything, don’t follow your dream, don’t make things happen, it’ll all work out by fate. Thank goodness Thomas Edison, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and all the other creative geniuses didn’t listen to the stupid lyrics.

    • Cris says:

      I take it a different way despite what some interpretations say. The reality of life is that as much as we think or want to be in control of everything in our lives, a lot of the time, we’re not. Things happen in life whether we want them to or not. I don’t think there is a message that says don’t try or don’t strive for anything, we should always do that, however, sometimes we have to step back realize that when we don’t have control over something, instead of stressing and worrying about it, just let life hand you what it’s going to hand you, because it’s going to happen either way

      • Kris says:

        I just finished The Measure by Nikki Erlick. A fascinating read with a message which I believe is exactly what you’re saying. We need a balance in how we live our lives; the key is how we respond to what comes our way AND still live into our dreams.
        Even though your view is a bit fatalistic / realistic, the point of “chilling out” and moving on with hope resonates.

      • EZ says:

        As I deal with cancer treatment, I continually have to tell the medical teams (doctors and nurses) to deal with the here and now. Repeatedly, they seem to feel it’s important to tell me dramatic, almost lurid details, about what lies ahead.

        “No. That does not interest me. I am not everyone else. Deal with me, in the here and now. If issues (side effects, etc..) arise, we’ll deal with them at that time.”

        I assume they are well-intentioned people. They are skilled and knowledgeable in their areas. But, it does get tiresome to constantly remind them I am here, now. Stay here with me.

        I might make this song my theme song: the future’s not ours to see; what will be will be.

  4. brian wolf says:

    What resonates is that the song connected her with her son and she knows by singing it later in the movie it may help her reunite with him again which happens, proving that will to power can also enact, Will Be …

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