TV Special On Surprise Pop Star Susan Boyle Debuts

Susan Boyle sings, and Simon Cowell and other celebrities sing her praises in a weekend TV special about the Cinderella story that has made her a best-selling recording artist.

All that’s lacking is a prince, but she says romance has to wait.

“Och, there’s no time for that now. I’m far too busy,” Boyle said. “There was a TV company that wanted to set me up with a man. Apparently he was a nice man, but I’ve got my living to do now. I don’t mind being friendly, but no marriage plans as yet.”

Photo: AP Photo
Singing “I Dreamed A Dream” with the London West End cast of “Les Miserables.”

“I Dreamed a Dream: The Susan Boyle Story,” debuting at 8 p.m. EST Sunday on TV Guide Network, details her sudden burst of fame and includes performances by Boyle from her new CD and with Broadway star Elaine Paige, the London West End cast of “Les Miserables” and others.

The hourlong show also airs Sunday on ITV1 in Britain.

Boyle, 48, stole the spotlight on “Britain’s Got Talent” last spring, although she lost out on winning the contest. She has had an at-times bumpy ride, including a brief hospitalization for exhaustion after the show’s season finale.

But her I Dreamed a Dream CD debuted last week at No. 1 and her record label, Columbia Records, said that gave her the best first week sales of 2009 and the best-selling album debut by a woman in the Nielsen SoundScan era.

In comments released by TV Guide Network and in an e-mail exchange with The Associated Press, Boyle said she’s delighting in her unlikely journey from a quiet Scottish villager to a star, but remains unaltered.

Photo: AP Photo
Twirls her scarf during her appearance on the NBC "Today" television program in New York.

“No, I am still the same person I always was — the wee lady from Blackburn. I still live in the same house, I still like the same things,” Boyle said. “I have never wanted to change, I have only ever wanted to be a professional singer, and perhaps that’s the only way in which I think differently of myself now: I feel like a professional.”

Her image has certainly changed, with Boyle downright glamorous as she performs in the TV special. It’s different from her original look that was routinely characterized as “dowdy.” (She admits to “mad hair” and “bushy eyebrows.”)

“Well, it wasn’t very nice,” Boyle said of the description. “But then I had never really thought about how I looked until I saw myself on television. I think I scrub up quite well now!”

Boyle sings “Cry Me a River” and The Rolling Stones tune “Wild Horses” in the TV special that includes interviews with her as well as Cowell, the “American Idol” judge who is executive producer of “Britain’s Got Talent,” Donny Osmond and others.

Her dreams now don’t include a success-fueled shopping spree, Boyle said, but she is thinking of helping others.

“I will probably be able to buy the house I live in, which was my family home, which is fantastic. I don’t have any other big ambitions really. I have bought some new furniture. You’ve got to keep your house looking nice, haven’t you?

Photo: AP Photo

“I would like to do something good with the money – be useful to other people, help them. I have a few ideas in mind,” she said.