Elaine C Smith on playing the part of Susan Boyle in panto

Elaine C Smith has taken on many challenging and varied roles over the years, but one of her most enjoyable was playing the part of Susan Boyle in pantomime last year.

The Scottish entertainer was appearing in Aberdeen last year and came out dressed as SuBo for one of her comedy scenes, paying homage to the little lady with the big voice.

“The audience decked it when I came out. I stood in the front of the stage and just sang ‘I Dreamed a Dream…’ well the audience became the audience of Britain’s Got Talent, they actually went ‘this is our bit now’, they got into character.

“It was the funniest and most moving (thing). And initially I was thinking ‘why are they clapping, why are they doing that?’ and about four performances in thought ‘oh they’re being the Britain’s Got Talent (audience)’.”

Elaine is back on stage this year in Aberdeen’s His Majesty’s Theatre, playing the role of the baddie The Wicked Fairy, in their production of Sleeping Beauty.

And she said that Aberdeen audiences are great fun, despite the claims that they are more reserved and more stand-offish than in the central belt.

“There’s no difference, if it’s funny they laugh, if you put on a good show people respond. Certainly 15, 20 years ago Aberdonian audiences were much more reserved, I remember they did sit back a bit on things,” Elaine explained.

“And I can understand why; the dominance of central belt culture drives them mad. In Glasgow and Edinburgh we get frustrated by London telling us everything. If you’re in Aberdeen and Inverness you’re probably saying ‘shut up’.”

Elaine added: “The dominance of comedy is all about Glasgow and I think it’s a real flaw that we don’t look further afield.”


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