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27 July 2021, 15:01 | Updated: 27 July 2021, 15:07
Susan Boyle shot to fame with her jaw-dropping audition for Britain’s Got Talent in 2009. Here’s everything you need to know about the singer
Susan Boyle was born on 1 April 1961 and is now aged 60. She became a global star with her performance of ‘I Dreamed a Dream’ on Britain’s Got Talent in 2009.
Susan is from Blackburn in West Lothian and is the youngest of four brothers and five sisters. She has spoken about being bullied as a child.
Before her appearance on Britain’s Got Talent, Susan had lessons from a vocal coach, attended Edinburgh Acting School and sang with her local church choir. The singer went on to win several local singing competitions and her mum encouraged her to enter Britain’s Got Talent.
The singer's net worth is estimated to be around £22 million.
When Susan auditioned in front of the judges at Clyde Auditorium Amanda Holden said her performance was the “biggest wake-up call ever”. She performed ‘I Dreamed a Dream’ from Les Misérables and is even credited with boosting ticket sales for the Vancouver production of the musical.
Her audition was named the most watched video of the year in 2009, having clocked up 120m views.
Susan just lost out on winning Britain’s Got Talent in 2009 – dance troupe Diversity won the competition. But her debut album, I Dreamed a Dream became the UK’s best-selling debut album of all time. It included the singles ‘I Dreamed a Dream’ and ‘Wild Horses’.
Her second album The Gift came out in 2010, followed by Someone to Watch Over Me in 2011, Susan Boyle Standing Ovation: The Greatest Songs from the Stage in 2012, Home for Christmas in 2013, Hope in 2014 and A Wonderful World in 2016.
SuBo’s newest album Ten, released in 2019, featured four new covers: ‘500 Miles’, ‘A Million Dreams’ featuring Michael Ball, ‘Stand By Me’ and ‘Climb Every Mountain’.
Susan Boyle has never been married and she lives in the family home in which she grew up in Blackburn (with her cat Pebbles!). Despite her global fame, she still volunteers at her local church.
In January 2019, Susan competed on America’s Got Talent: The Champions and was rewarded with a golden buzzer from judge Mel B (meaning she goes straight through to the finals). Fellow judge Simon Cowell said: “I cannot think of any other contestant who has defined this show better than you. You are the one. You made a huge difference to a lot of people’s lives and I am absolutely thrilled you are here.”
At the Tokyo 2020 Olympics Opening Ceremony, which was postponed until July 2021, an international audience at home was pleasantly surprised to hear the Scottish singing treasure’s mezzo voice accompanying the traditional symbolic release of doves.
Susan later said of her appearance that “it was a true honour to be asked by the #TokyoOlympics to use my song ‘Wings To Fly’ during the dove release at the Opening Ceremony.”