Susan Boyle Biography
She is the "Hairy Angel" who walked on the stage in "Britain's Got Talent" and shocked the world.
The Mumsy looking spinster made the panel's heart sink and the audience were sniggering behind their hands until she opened her mouth.
Out came a beautiful clear rendition of "I dreamed a dream" from "Les Miserables" which won her a standing ovation and millions of fans around the world as her performance was circulated on You Tube.
After the show she said she was well aware of the hostility towards her because of her appearance and said, "I know what they were thinking, but why should it matter as long as I can sing. It's not a beauty contest."
But she has refused to change her image and although she has been glamorized she is still the homely Scottish lady who lives in the family's council house in West Lothian with her 10-year-old cat Pebbles and that is what has endeared her to her fans.
Singer Elaine Page who has long been her idol has described her as the perfect role model for everyone who has had a dream.
She was born on 1st April 1961 in West Lothian. She was briefly deprived of oxygen during the difficult birth and was later diagnosed as having learning difficulties.
Her father died in 1990 and she dedicated herself to looking after elderly mother until she died in 2007 aged 91. Her death hit Boyle hard and for four days following the death she refused to open the door to anyone or even answer the telephone.
Boyle was one of 40 acts put through to the semi finals of "Britain's Got Talent" and she sang "Memory" from "Cats." She received the highest number of votes and went into the final as the clear favourite to win the contest.
But the shock result meant she finished second to the dance group "Diversity." Simon Cowell said afterwards, "I looked at her face and I thought she can't cope with not winning."
The day after the show she was admitted to The Priory, a private psychiatric hospital in London suffering from total mental and physical exhaustion. She remained there for five days then came out saying she intended to take part in the "Britain's Got Talent Tour."
Despite her health problems she managed to appear at 20 of the 24 dates but she still found it hard to deal with her new-found fame and there were several reports of her losing her temper at hotels and airports and shouting and swearing at people who tried to wind her up.
She has now adjusted well and is the darling of young and old. She copes very well with television interviews and recently spoke openly and frankly to Piers Morgan on ITV. She laughed-off claims that she had a mental problem and said she had never had a boyfriend or even been kissed.
Her dream really did come true when she was invited to sing before Pope Benedict XVI at an open air mass in Bellahouston Park when he visited Scotland.
She sang "I dreamed a dream" and joined the 800 strong choir to sing two hymns. She said it was a great honour to sing for the Pope and as a Roman Catholic it was something she had always dreamed of."