Susan Boyle is a Scottish singer who came to international attention when she appeared as a contestant on the TV programme Britain’s Got Talent on 11 April 2009, singing “I Dreamed a Dream” from Les Misérables. Her first album was released in November 2009 and debuted as the number one best-selling album on charts around the globe.
When Boyle first appeared on Britain’s Got Talent at the city’s Clyde Auditorium, she said that she aspired to become a professional singer “as successful as Elaine Paige”. The judges and the audience laughed at her as a women with a squashed face, unruly teeth and unkempt hair aspired to become as successful as Elaine Paige. And then Susan sang. She stood with her feet apart, like a Scottish Edith Piaf, and very slowly began to sing Les Miserables’ I Dreamed A Dream. The judges were astonished. They gasped, they gaped, they clapped. They looked almost ashamed. Programme judge Amanda Holden remarked upon the audience’s initially cynical attitude, and the subsequent “biggest wake-up call ever” upon hearing her performance. This performance was widely reported and tens of millions of people viewed the video on YouTube. Boyle was “absolutely gobsmacked” by the strength of this reaction. Since the appearance, Paige has expressed interest in singing a duet with Boyle, and has called her “a role model for everyone who has a dream”.
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