Susan Boyle received a standing ovation as she sang at the finale of the opening night of the musical based on her life.
Fans from across the world travelled to Newcastle”s Theatre Royal to see I Dreamed A Dream.
Both sad and funny, it charts the singer”s life growing up in a large Catholic family in Blackburn, West Lothian, until she was catapulted to world fame in 2009 after her memorable audition for Britain”s Got Talent.
Simon Cowell”s protege is played by Scottish actress Elaine C Smith, who co-wrote the show and who has a powerful voice herself.
Speaking to ! ahead of the opening night, the mezzo-soprano told of the series of coincidences that led to Elaine being cast, “One day, someone asked me who I would pick to be me in the story of my life. I”d never met her, but I immediately thought of Elaine. It all happened after that.”
Elaine, who like Susan grew up in a close-knit, large Catholic family, recalled that her, “mobile phone started going bonkers.”
“Everyone was ringing and texting me to ask my reaction to Susan’s comment. I was flattered, but didn’t dare think it would come to anything.”
“Then a friend who’s a producer and who had heard that Susan was a fan of mine, put the musical together and asked me to be the lead. It was a big compliment and I jumped at the chance.”
The two woman have a genuine rapport having both started out on the club circuit where each had the same signature tune – I Don”t Know How to Love Him.”
On Tuesday night, Elaine won a standing ovation – as did the rest of the cast – at the curtain call.
Susan, 50, took to the stage in a shimmering red dress and belted out the title song to an adoring audience.
When an American voice shouted from the stalls “We love you”, she replied: “I love you too, see you outside.”
After the show adoring fans from as far afield as Canada, Australia and New Zealand gathered at the stage door to see their heroine.
The show will tour for the rest of the year with Susan expected to sing at the curtain call of many of the performances.
In pictures: Susan”s meteoric rise to fame