Mon, Apr 20, 2009 - Page 13 News List




Susan Boyle’s triumph on Britain’s Got Talent has led Elaine Paige to suggest a collaboration.

As global media phenomena go, little could surpass Boyle’s stratospheric rise to superstardom. So, what better high note to end an extraordinary week, one that has seen the 47-year-old Scottish singing spinster win plaudits from around the world, than the prospect of a duet with her heroine, Paige?

It was just before her life-changing performance on Britain’s Got Talent on April 18 that Boyle revealed her dream: to become a professional singer as successful as Paige — with whom she has sung along countless times, alone, in front of her bedroom mirror, equipped with a hairbrush for a microphone.

Now, in a message of support, Paige, the original Evita in London’s West End, has punted the idea of the pair singing together. “Ever since Susan’s appearance on Britain’s Got Talent my Radio 2 inbox has been flooded with

e-mails,” she writes on her Web site.

“It seems her performance has captured the hearts of everyone who saw it, me included ... It looks like I have competition! Perhaps we should record a duet?”

But then anything, it seems, could happen now in the incredible brave new world Boyle inhabits. As Paige puts it: “She is a role model for everyone who has a dream.”

Paige is just the latest of a string of celebrity endorsers since Boyle’s jaw-dropping performance of the Les Miserables song I Dreamed a Dream on the ITV talent show, which has so far attracted 25 million YouTube hits, and helped her do what few British A-listers can: crack the US market.

Appearances on Larry King Live, Good Morning America, NBC and CBS, and the prospect of Oprah, have fuelled demand for an album, something of which Britain’s Got Talent supremo Simon Cowell and his record label are no doubt aware.

The father of Slumdog Millionaire child actress Rubina Ali tried to sell his nine-year-old daughter for adoption in a bid to escape the Mumbai slums, a British newspaper said yesterday.

News of the World alleged that Rafiq Qureshi wanted US$400,000 for the girl, who played the young Latika in the British hit film set in India.

Slumdog Millionaire, a rags-to-riches tale of children from the slums of Mumbai, won eight Oscars in February, including the best picture Academy Award.

News of the World said its reporters posed as a wealthy family from Dubai, employing its regular “fake sheikh” sting tactic.

The weekly tabloid said an informant told them that Qureshi was touting for the highest offer, having already been approached by a Middle Eastern family.

The newspaper published pictures of the actress, her father and uncle posing with their undercover reporter, plus video clips of Qureshi and his brother-in-law during their meeting last week.

“Yes, we are considering Rubina’s future,” Qureshi was quoted as saying.

He put the reporter in touch with his brother-in-law Rajan More.

“We are interested in securing our girl’s future,” the star’s uncle was quoted as saying.

“If you wanted to adopt we could discuss this, but her parents would also expect some proper compensation in return.

“Whatever money is agreed by Rajan, I will accept.

“We can discuss everything about this deal when we meet. There’s a lot of interest in Rubina.”

Qureshi, Ali, More and some other relatives met the British reporters in a Mumbai hotel, the newspaper said.

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