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Page 3 Profile: Cilla Black, entertainer

Surprise, surprise!

Yes, very funny. But you had better leave the gags to the woman herself, as this month she will be recording the pilot for a new BBC sitcom called Led Astray, alongside fellow scouse star Paul O’Grady.

Not another sitcom…

Have hope, this was written by Laurence Marks and Maurice Gran, the creators of Birds of a Feather, and will be shot under the watch of Red Dwarf director, Ed Bye. You might remember sisters Tracey and Sharon, and their promiscuous neighbour Dorien, after the pair’s husbands ended up in prison.  Led Astray follows this theme,  with Cilla playing Tanya, who discovers her long-lost half-brother Arthur, played by O’Grady, is in prison and agrees to put him up on release.

But I didn’t think she had done a lorra lorra acting?

Actually, yes. She won the  Writers’ Guild of Great Britain prize for Britain’s Top Female Comedy Star for her work in 1970s sketch shows.

What else besides Blind Date?

Here’s a quick reminder. The popular dating show did win her a Bafta, but the 70-year-old is celebrating her 50th year as an entertainer, so she knows her  stuff. Rewind to the 1960s and our Cilla was rubbing shoulders with The Beatles. Her rendition of Dionne Warwick’s song  “Anyone who had a Heart” was the UK’s biggest-selling single by a female artist of the decade, and she had 11 Top 10 hits between 1964 and 1971.

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