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NBC Insider America's Got Talent

Susan Boyle Says She Suffered a Stroke in 2022 

“I have fought like crazy to get back on stage,” she continued. “And I have done it.”

By Christopher Rosa

Susan Boyle became a music icon immediately after her Britain's Got Talent Audition in 2009. Then 47 and unknown to the public, she sang  “I Dreamed a Dream" from Les Misérables and completely stunned the Judges, including Simon Cowell. She's had a whirlwind career since then, selling millions of records and performing in venues all over the globe. Her last concert tour wrapped in 2020, confirming the world is just as captivated with her as ever. 

How to Watch

Watch the Season 19 premiere of America’s Got Talent Tuesday, May 28 at 8/7c on NBC and next day on Peacock

That said, Boyle had a health scare last year that almost changed everything. While performing "I Dreamed a Dream" on BGT in June 2023 — a return to the stage and song that started it all — Boyle revealed she suffered a stroke in 2022. 

Susan Boyle opens up about suffering a stroke in 2022 

When asked by BGT Hosts Dec Donnelly and Ant McPartlin how it felt to be back singing on the show, Boyle said (per NBC News), “It feels great. It is extra special for me, actually, because last April there, I suffered a minor stroke.”

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She continued, “I have fought like crazy to get back on stage. And I have done it.”

To this, Cowell told Boyle, “Susan, we owe you so much and I knew you weren’t well, but if anyone was going to come back you were going to come back because it wouldn’t be the same without you.”

Susan Boyle performing on America's Got Talent.

Boyle also opened up on Instagram about her 2022 stroke and what the recent performance on BGT means to her. "Tonight I had the privilege of returning to @bgt and performing with the wonderful cast of @lesmizofficial," she wrote in a caption alongside photos of the appearance. "This evening was even more special for me as in April of 2022 I had a stroke. For the past year I have worked so hard to get my speech and singing back, with the sole aim of being able to sing on stage again & tonight my hard work & perseverance paid off, singing the song that started it all, 'I Dreamed A Dream'…"

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Watch Boyle's incredible 2023 BGT performance for yourself in the video, below. After all these years, she still astounds.