A conversation with Susan Boyle

Thursday 22 November 2012

The singer shares her highlights of 2012 and reveals her dreams for the future.
Susan BoyleSusan Boyle

What has 2012 been like for you?

This year has been unbelievable. I’ve sung for the Queen as part of the Jubilee celebrations, returned to BGT and performed on the final.

I’ve sung with my childhood hero Donny Osmond in LA and then Las Vegas, which was magical and nerve wracking. I’ve sold more albums, I’ve made my fourth album - the album I’ve always dreamed of doing. I’ve toured the country with my musical I Dreamed A Dream, which was hugely successful, beyond my wildest expectations and it’s going to Australia in June 2013.
Meeting Elton John and George Michael were also highlights and so was singing You’ll Never Walk Alone at Celtic Park to 60,000 people.

I’ve been on holiday to Benidorm, although what happens in Benidorm stays in Benidorm. I’ve been across to Ireland to relax. I’ve become a bit of a regular at Stobo Castle which is great for weekends away.

I’ve been incredibly busy and also incredibly happy. I feel more comfortable in my own skin now and enjoying myself more, which is good. I’m lucky, I don’t take that for granted. I’m incredibly lucky.

Tell me about your fourth studio album.

Well, it’s my fourth album in three years. It’s called Standing Ovation, it’s due out on Monday November 19 and consists of songs from the greatest musicals such as Cats, Les Miserables and Fame. I loved making it. I got a lot of fun out of it and with my new producer and a new vocal coach all the elements made it really enjoyable. This was the album I have always wanted to make.

What is your favourite song on the album?

There are so many but I think probably it would have to be Out Here On My Own. It gave me a chance to reflect on what has happened to me.

You recently performed in LA and Las Vegas with your hero Donny Osmond what was that like?

It was a very special moment. I was so impressed by Donny and how professional he is. It’s not every day you get the chance to perform with your childhood hero, the one you listened to at 13 and even skipped school to make sure you could get to his concert (yes I did get in a lot of trouble for that with my parents).

It was a magical moment that I’ll never forget. I was cross with myself for being so shy around him and I beat myself up for days afterwards for being so silly. But it was such an emotional moment for me, and the fact I could remember the words to the song was a small miracle in itself. I felt like I’d let him down and my fans for not doing the best performance.

This year saw the launch of your own musical charting your life story. What was it like seeing your life played out on stage?

Well at first it was scary. These actors are playing your family members; they weren’t just ‘characters’ to me, they were real life people. You start to make comparisons or worry that you are going to offend a family member. The cast played them well and were sympathetic to the story, so after a few rehearsals you begin to relax and get into it. I needn’t have worried!

What was the best moment of the past three years for you?

There have been so many but the best is still going to America for the first time. What a laugh we had. It took forever to get through the airport. I’d never seen so many paparazzi in my life. It was so funny. At that point I didn’t even know how to cope with the fame.

I also really enjoyed going to Disney, I was less than impressed going on the wee Dumbo ride but Splash Mountain, well that was hilarious - I’ve not laughed like that since. I was terrified with that drop and I was trying to behave in public and so that ruled out any bad language, which when we came to the huge drop was rather tricky. We got absolutely soaked. It’s still without a doubt one of the highlights of all the trips. I’ve still got the photograph.

China is also one of the best memories. I was actually really scared, as I’d never seen so many people in one place and knowing it was televised made it a little more nerve wracking. Just as well I found out afterwards that it was watched by half a billion people or I probably would have opened my mouth to sing and found myself mute. To have 90,000 people in a stadium clapping and cheering: only one word can describe that...awesome.

What other dreams do you have?

I don’t think I have many left. I’ve met the Pope, met the Queen, been around the world.  The dream would be to do it all again. I’d like to appear in films or perform a track for a movie. I’d like to do more performances in Europe.

Who would you like to perform with now?

Now that’s a tough one. I’d like to do a duet with Rod Stewart and I quite like Mumford & Sons; it’d be good to do something with them. Or I could go totally crazy and do a duet with someone like Jay-Z. No one would see that coming now, would they? He could rap, and I could sing something more up tempo, which would be fun. But it’s polite to be asked, so I’ll wait and see if I’m asked to sing with them.

If there is one thing you have learned that you could pass on, what would it be?

I’d tell people not to be afraid of the unknown. Embrace it. Don’t let your insecurities get the better of you.

Standing Ovation album coverSusan  Boyle's new album Standing Ovation is out now.


  • Alfie Boe

    Alfie Boe: a real diamond

    The 'People's Tenor' talks to Saga about Les Miserables, YouTube and his forthcoming appearance at the Queen's Diamond Jubilee concert

    Read on

  • Cliff Richard

    Cliff knows he's got soul

    First there was Dusty...and now we have Cliff in Memphis, as the ageless pop legend releases his eagerly-awaited album Soulicious

    Read on

  • Ruth Madoc in From Blackpool to Benidorm

    Ruth Madoc: from Blackpool to Benidorm

    Actress Ruth Madoc talks to Saga about the history of holidays and – of course – Hi De Hi

    Read on

  • Robin Cousins - Holiday on Ice

    Actor, judge, choreographer. It's all in a day's work for Robin Cousins. Neil Davey speaks to, arguably, the busiest man in show business

    Read on

  • John Barrowman

    An interview with John Barrowman

    He's an actor, a singer, a TV personality, a West End star. He's helped find a Nancy. He's fought off aliens in Cardiff - and flirted with both Dr Who and his sidekicks. It must be interesting being John Barrowman, as Neil Davey finds out

    Read on

  • Katherine Jenkins

    Katherine Jenkins: an exclusive video interview

    With its mix of contemporary and traditional repertoire, Katherine Jenkins's album Believe, takes you from the haunting Sarah McLachlan song, Angel, through to a stunning working of Evanescence's Bring Me To Life. Neil Davey went along to meet the mezzo soprano and find out more.

    Read on

  • Lulu

    Something to shout about - Lulu's beauty secrets

    Sixties pop icon Lulu looks ageless. She talks to Lynnette Peck-Bateman about how she stays radiant and in great shape.

    Read on

  • Lord of the Dance

    Michael Flatley: Lord of the Dance

    Since leaping – quite literally – to fame with River Dance, Michael Flatley is the man who took Irish Dance to the world stage and into the 21st Century. Lord of the Dance has been seen by more than 60 million people

    Read on

  • Tony Christie

    Saga talks to Tony Christie

    There aren’t many people who’ve made their West End debut at the age of 67. Then again, there aren’t many people like Tony Christie. Neil Davey caught up with the star of acclaimed rock ‘n’ roll musical Dreamboats & Petticoats

    Read on

  • Singin' in the Rain

    Encore theatre tickets

    Great deals and exclusive offers for Saga customers on West End theatre tickets, including matinee club offers, meet the cast events and 2 for 1 deals.


  • Saga Book Shop


  • Saga Shop

    Fantastic prices and free standard P&P to UK mainland deliveries.


  • CBill

    Posted: Thursday 22 November 2012

    Great questions, wonderful responses from Susan. It is indeed amazing how much she has done, and overcome in just three years! Aside from those mentions, she's also set some pretty amazing records such as being the only person in UK's 65 year music history to have her first 3 albums all reach #1 in less than 3 years.


Type your comment here

 characters remaining.

Saga Magazine

For more fascinating stories and insightful articles, why not try Saga Magazine for just £1 for 3 issues.

Theatre tickets

Amazing deals on West End theatre shows

Great deals and exclusive offers for Saga customers on West End theatre tickets, including matinee club offers, meet the cast events and 2 for 1 deals.

Saga Magazine e-newsletter

Sign up to our free newsletter today

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter for all the latest recipes, gardening tips, prize draws, interviews and more delivered to your inbox every Friday.