Gregory Katz, Associated Press Writer

LONDON – Susan Boyle, the dowdy Scottish church volunteer who may or may not be a world-class singer, takes the stage for the finals of "Britain's Got Talent" on Saturday, with the public wondering if she will win the show or crack under the pressure.

All the amateur singer who suffers from learning disabilities has to do is outshine nine other competitors on live television in front of millions of viewers in Britain and a worldwide Internet audience.

And there have been signs Boyle is feeling the heat. She lost her cool during a confrontation with two reporters this week that saw police intervene. One contest judge said she even contemplated pulling out of the competition.

Judge Piers Morgan has called for everyone to back off Boyle, but said she would carry on, no matter what.

"She is one tough lady who has had to fight since the day she was born," he wrote on his blog Friday. "There is no way she's going to quit now as some of the papers seem to be suggesting, trust me."

"Britain's Got Talent" has mesmerized Britain all week as a bizarre range of competitors vie for Saturday's finals. The winner, to be announced at the end of the show, will earn a 100,000 pound ($159,000) prize and a chance to perform before Queen Elizabeth II at the Royal Variety Show.

The final won't be shown live in the United States, or streamed over the Internet — meaning U.S. fans will have to rely on video sharing sites like YouTube, where videos will be posted by the show's producers once it ends Saturday evening.

Boyle sailed through her last test — a performance Sunday of "Memory" from "Cats" — although she started poorly and did not seem to captivate the audience as much as in her first round. And if there is more evidence of diva-like behavior, Boyle risks breaking the almost mystical bond she enjoys with the British public.


No comments: