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What Is “Real” About Reality TV Through Susan Boyle’s Debut On Britain’s Got Talent Essay

British Got Talent Show is a reality TV show that has been instrumental in developing young musicians. The talent search competition is staged with an aim of getting a favorable winner and a talented individual who is worth nurturing through the media. This is evident since the media provides effective semiotic platform that enables fans and judges to make accurate judgment on artists.

Indeed, media platforms such as radio, television and magazines are the credible means of access to thought. They also form credible means of understanding the existing reality into communicable forms and signs that we have.

Evidently, the Got talent show that is a media based show has enabled various individuals to understand Boyle holistically. The show facilitated semiotic understanding of the artist by the audience and judges who later depicted her as a decent proficient singer.

This was because of her comical nature and presentation ability. The video show shows clearly that, passionate musicians should participate in various shows to gain fame and international support. It gives a credible understanding that organized international competitions hold the capacity of elevating the status of musicians in the society.

Such competitions provide a real and effective platform that facilitates confidence building among artists. The competitions also provide them with an excellent opportunity that enhances their capacity of building a strong fan base and semiotic thinking about the media. Indeed, the show has made people to understand Boyle’s journey in the music industry and the event’s proceedings.

This paper gives comprehensive information pertaining to real events that took place at the Got Talent Show. It also covers the reaction of the audience and judges during and after Susan Boyle’s presentation.

The things that took place in the video

As shown in the video, Susan Boyle entered the stage with a lot of passion and determination. This gave her strength despite being skeptical about her performance since she was not used to making presentations on such platforms (Smith, 2012, p, 1). The singer was not a celebrity by then and everyone including the judges had a negative perception as she was walking in.

They thought that she could not deliver quality music that matches the standard of the competition. This was depicted with the look on the faces of the judges and the audience who thought she was just in the competition to make a normal appearance. Indeed, one of the judges asked her if she was sure, she wanted to perform.

The judge also asked her age and where she was all those years without making an appearance in the show. Consequently, the judge asked her whether she had the requisite singing ability and why she has not been active in the music industry (Smith, 2012, p, 1).

Boyle in her response to questions stunned everyone as she started to speak. She became comical at the outset and funny. Her confidence once she got on the stage made the judges and the crowed to be curious in listening to what she had to present. The singer started by giving her names to the judges and the fans.

She gave full details of the town where she was from and her dreams in life. Her comical nature was depicted when she told the judges that she was 47 year however, “my age is just one side of me” (Smith, 2012, p, 1). Everyone in the show found this amazing and was curios to listen to her since she gave the reply boldly. Boyle also told the judges that she had not been active in the music industry since she had not had a chance to do so.

She narrated that she had been lacking the requisite support and platform that could enable her make several presentations in various shows. This is what prompted her to take the opportunity that life presented to her to perform in the Got Talent Show.

Boyle was given ago ahead by the judges to make her presentation after answering the questions in a prolific manner. From the preamble stages, her vocals and tonal value was very good. This made everyone to notice her ability in singing despite her age (Piper, 2012, p, 1). As she was singing the next stanza of the song the judges were keenly listening to her while some of the fans had started to like her performance.

The judges were amazed as she was singing on and they started to develop appositive mindset about her. Indeed, everyone went on a frenzy mood including the judges who even joined her in singing. This was evident as one female judge who was emotionally touched and moved by her ability stood while clapping for her.

The judge was very happy and could not believe that Boyle could make such a presentation. At the end, she said that this is a wake up call to everyone including the judges. She said that every potential person should be given a chance to display what he or she has in the music industry (Piper, 2012, p, 1).

There should be no discrimination of any nature in the music industry since there is a proof that even the old can make a thrilling display. Other judges who were very skeptical about the woman’s performance capacity also developed appositive perception. It was amazing to them how such an old woman could manage to make a vibrant and effective performance.

Their skeptical nature could be seen through semiotic understanding. This was evident through analysis and understanding of their body language, signs and gestures. However, they were touched and their fears were no more.

All the judges gave Boyle “a yes” to proceed to the next level of the competition. They stated that her performance was amazing and that listening to her was a great privilege to them. Indeed, Boyle became one of the few people who have managed to receive “a yes” from all the judges in the life of that competition.

This was a miracle for a woman who was doubtful of her performance and ability to recording an exemplary performance (Montgomery, 2010, p, 2). In fact, Boyle started walking out of the stage after finishing her performance and was just blocked by the guards.

She did not wait for the judges comments since she thought they could not recommend the quality of her performance. She was equally surprised when she was called back to hear the judges comments that were positive.

The reactions of the audience

Indeed, Boyle had an excellent connection with the audience due to her thrilling presentation. The audience who were skeptical about her singing ability as she was walking at the center stage became her fans at the end of the show. Their fears were first quelled when she answered the judge that she had another side of her despite her old age.

The confidence and boldness at which she gave the answer made the audience to calm down to hear her presentation. They were connected to her as she started her presentation to the end and they were making loud cheers (Jenkins, 2008, p, 3). They gave her emotional support through cheering, clapping and dancing as she was singing. This was evident through semiotic understanding of the show that depicted their pleasure and jovial nature.

Her vocal strength, tonal value, good sound and smart attire were the instrumental elements that made them to develop appositive mindset about her. The audience noticed her singing potential and was all smiles throughout her presentation. They could not believe that the woman could stage such a wonderful and electrifying performance. They affirmed that the woman was the most refreshing and talented singer.

This was because of her singing ability and confidence on stage (Jenkins, 2008, p, 3). As shown, the audience was in a cheering mood all the time. They connected well with the singer and made her to realize that many people could like her songs. This was her motivation in the music industry where she had inferior participation due to lack of confidence on her performance.

Particularly, the audience reacted by singing with her the common phrases of the song and cheering her. They also reacted by supporting her bid in winning the title of the show, buying her albums and attending her shows. Their support has made Boyle an international star and a singer with immense network. The support has also been instrumental in ensuring high sales of Boyle’s albums.

She has now sold many albums that have been her source of income. This has made a significant contribution in transforming her lifestyle from a poor person to a celebrity lifestyle. She now dresses in nice clothes, live in a posh apartment and drives a decent car. Indeed, the audience reaction has been the key contributor to Boyle’s good lifestyle in the present day (Boyle, 2011, p, 2).

Reaction of the judges

Indeed, the judges who were managing the show were happy with Boyle’s performance. They were amazed by the level of her performance despite her age limit (Montgomery, 2010, p, 3). This was because they thought when they saw the contestant that she could not deliver a quality peace of music. In particular, one of the judges took issue with her age citing that she was not fit for the competition.

The judge was curios to know Boyle’s age and why her presence had not been significant in the music industry since her childhood. He was of the opinion that she had little to offer to the audience and the international community as well.

However, the woman put up a spirited fight and responded to his unfair judgment and perception effectively. She said that her other side is to pursue a career in singing and that she had immense capacity to be a coveted musician (Boyle, 2011, p, 2).

Evidently, the woman’s thrilling performance was depicted from the start to the end of her presentation. The exemplary performance made all the judges to give her a resounding yes that is hard for a contestant to achieve. The judges reacted positively to her performance and they delivered strengthening remarks to Boyle.

In particular, one judge reacted by crediting Boyle for her determination, hard work and for staging an excellent performance. He said that her vocals were remarkable, she was looking smart and her tonal value resembled that of a professional singer. He surprised the judge by her performance and the judge said, “this is the biggest surprise I have had so far in this show” (Smith, 2012, p, 1).

He further said that everyone was laughing when you started, no one is laughing now. That was indeed, “a stunning performance that no one could imagine could come from you”. From the sentiments, the judge was happy and full of joy since Boyle was able to prove her singing prowess.

The second judge was also thrilled by the woman’s singing capacity that was characterized with excellent musical elements. The judge who was a woman was touched emotionally by her performance. She was in great joy and showed immense support to Boyle, as she was singing. She was cheering her, clapping for her and making nice body moves as the woman was singing.

This showed how well their connection was as she was singing. She noted that Boyle’s performance was a wake up call to everyone in the music industry. The stakeholders should know that everyone can sing and has the potential of staging a charming performance.

That is any form of discrimination based on gender or age should not arise. She was saying that in consideration of how Boyle had made a wonderful presentation despite her age. She noted that what is important is the passion and determination that one has but not age.

The judge said in her remarks “I am thrilled by your performance and this is awake up call to all” (Smith, 2012, p, 1). She also said that she had an absolute privilege listening to her. This showed her level of happiness and joy that was motivating through media platform.

The third judge also commended Boyle for her good performance despite being the most skeptical person about her capacity to singing from the initial stages. He said that Boyle staged an extraordinary performance that no one could expect. This was because everyone felt her stage presence. She also sang with high quality pitch and excellent vocal range that was extraordinary.

The judge referred to her as a little tiger that have the capacity of pulling a surprise when list expected. He said “Susan yon are a little tiger” who will go far in music. “You have the talent and your performance has shown that in a big way” (Smith, 2012, p, 1). This has taught us a lesson that everyone have the potential to sing irrespective of age. The judge whose fears were answered was very happy and he granted Boyle best wishes in her career.

The way Susan Boyle is in the video

The semiotic understanding of Susan Boyle as shown in the video depicts her as a passionate old woman who was keen to pursue her dream. Boyle entered the stage with a poor reception from the fans and the judges. However, this did not prevent her from gaining the much needed confidence in such a show. She started by eroding the negative perception that she could not sing by explaining her other side of personality (Burns, 2009, p, 12).

She looked confident at the time although with a little nervousness if keenly observed. She was simple and cutely dressed in brown attire that accentuated her body structure. She also had a nice hairstyle with a simple make up on the face. Her simple nature that is depicted through semiotic understanding is what made the judges and the audience to doubt her ability from the outset.

They were doubting her ability since the show had been hosting musicians with expensive attires and make ups. Despite this, Boyle effectively used her language power, signs and strong vocal capacity to deliver a thrilling song that drove everyone in the talent show to a frenzy mood.

The things that build up emotions in the video

As shown in the video, key things or elements that build up emotions include Boyle’s story, the hostile reception that she received, questions from the judges and the passion with which she sang. These elements were instrumental in building emotional touch between Boyle and the audience including the judges (Burns, 2009, p, 12).

Firstly, the crowed were turned emotional when she was telling her story. They had a lot of sympathy and empathy for her due to her long-suffering. She said in her story as she was answering the judges’ questions that she was a less fortunate member of the society who had passion in music. She said that her passion and dream had not been realized due to lack of support. She was also lacking opportunity and a platform through which she could display her talent.

Consequently, the questions that she was receiving from the judges were also emotional. This could be seen by the way she was giving her answers and her body language. Although, she gave credible answers, she was getting unstable emotionally when explaining various issues touching on her career and life in general.

The passion with which she sang also presented an emotional touch between her and the audience. This was evident by the overwhelming reaction by the audience who later became her fans. The audience loved the fact that she was down to earth and the quality of her voice that was electrifying (Burns, 2009, p, 16).

How the show is staged according to the video

According to the video, the show that attracts many participants and fans was staged professionally. The design of the showroom was exclusive, it was built magnificently and decorated with quality lighting systems that give it a high profile. Indeed, the show remains a high profile event in the UK and its organizers are always keen to ensure its success (Montgomery, 2010, p, 5).

It is also fitted with quality sound system that ensures effective transmission of sound to every part of the room. This enables everyone to listen effectively and enjoy the participant’s presentations with limited complications. Consequently, the stage or the platform where artists perform from is also well structured, wide and colorful that makes it scary for new artists. Its scary nature has made several artists to loose confidence on stage thereby affecting the quality of their performance.

According to Boyle, one needs to overcome the scary nature of media platforms and assume that he or she is performing in a normal stage. This is essential since the scary nature that television realism brings may make one to loose confidence and fail to deliver effectively (Piper, 2012, p, 1). Boyle stated when she was being interviewed in 2012 that, the shining lights and several colored decorations that characterized the reality TV show nearly cost her.

This was because she was not used to performing on such a stage with strong lighting systems and pulsating sound. Reality shows also contribute in building real stars with the capacity to withstand pressure from fans and deliver quality music. It enables contestants to build confidence and understand the dynamics of making a presentation before an enthusiastic crowed.

Theory on semiotics and realism in television and what is real in talent show

According to Bignell (2002, p, 2) semiotic is a powerful and a very influential way of thinking about the media as shown in Boyle’s case. The word that means “sign” is away of analyzing the meaning of various phenomenon’s or presentations by studying or looking at the signs such as words, symbols and pictures.

These signs are important since they communicate meanings to various individuals pertaining to presentations and events. Semiotic is a realism concept that can contribute effectively in understanding artists than the media Bignell (2002, p, 3). This is evident since it adopts the way that language works. That is it aids the understanding of how language works and how it can be used to convey noble massages that are transformative in nature.

According to scholars, semiotic and realism television shows are significant in human life. They are the central communication channels that enable people to know one’s potentials. This has been evident with “Got Talent TV Reality Show” that remains a credible media driven show in Britain. The show has been instrumental in developing musicians and enabling fans to understand their diverse potentials.

This is apparent since the show provides a high profile platform for displaying one’s musical prowess. Boyle affirmed in her story that, she entered the talent show competition with a lot of skepticism especially about the media.

This was because she new that the media could dent her music passion since she was not confident of her performance capacity (Drew, 2012, p, 1). This was due to her inferior record of exemplary performance from her childhood. Despite that, the woman’s determination made her successful. This was evident as the audience and the judges emotionally loved her performance through semiotic understanding.

This makes her a living example for most poor artist who thinks that opportunities are no more for them in the industry (Smith, 2012, p 1). They should realize that every individual is capable of attaining his or her dream with determination and hard work.


It is proper to conclude that, the British talent TV show was critical in transforming Boyle’s life by giving her a platform where she had effective display of her talent. The display made many individuals to identify her as a refreshing and talented singer who could transform individual’s social actions through her educative massages.

The show also made people to be aware of her existence and the relevance of her songs in the contemporary society. This has been essential for her growth since the songs adopted social and love themes that most individuals like.

List of References

Bignell, J 2002, Media Semiotics: an Introduction, Manchester Univ. Press, Manchester.

Boyle, S 2011, The Woman I was Born to Be, Corgi Press, London.

Burns, K. 2009, Celeb 2.0: How Social Media Foster Our Fascination with Popular Culture, Praeger/ABC-CLIO, Santa Barbara, CA.

Drew, R 2012, . Web.

Jenkins, H 2008, Convergence Culture: Where Old and New Media Collide, Oxford University Press, New York, NY.

Montgomery, A 2010, Susan Boyle Dreams Can Come True, Penguin, London.

Piper, D 2012, . Web.

Smith, J 2012, Susan Boyle’s First Audition in Britain’s Got Talent. Web.

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"What Is “Real” About Reality TV Through Susan Boyle’s Debut On Britain’s Got Talent." IvyPanda, 20 May 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/what-is-real-about-reality-tv-through-susan-boyles-debut-on-britains-got-talent/.

1. IvyPanda. "What Is “Real” About Reality TV Through Susan Boyle’s Debut On Britain’s Got Talent." May 20, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/what-is-real-about-reality-tv-through-susan-boyles-debut-on-britains-got-talent/.


IvyPanda. "What Is “Real” About Reality TV Through Susan Boyle’s Debut On Britain’s Got Talent." May 20, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/what-is-real-about-reality-tv-through-susan-boyles-debut-on-britains-got-talent/.


IvyPanda. 2020. "What Is “Real” About Reality TV Through Susan Boyle’s Debut On Britain’s Got Talent." May 20, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/what-is-real-about-reality-tv-through-susan-boyles-debut-on-britains-got-talent/.


IvyPanda. (2020) 'What Is “Real” About Reality TV Through Susan Boyle’s Debut On Britain’s Got Talent'. 20 May.

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