Remembering Cilla on what would have been her 60th Anniversary in Showbusiness!
In August 1963, Priscilla Maria Veronica White, as she was then known, was a twenty-year-old dictaphone typist in a Liverpool office. One month later she became Cilla Black, recording star, the first woman to be launched by the late Brian Epstein, who had already introduced The Beatles to the pop scene in 1962.
On 27 September 1963, Cilla launched her career in showbusiness with the release of her debut single “Love of the Loved” (written by Paul McCartney & John Lennon). Cilla’s recording of Burt Bacharach and Hal David’s “Anyone Who Had A Heart” went on to top the charts in 1964, followed by another No.1 hit – “You’re My World”. She had a further 9 top ten singles in the sixties and seventies, including “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin'”, “Surround Yourself With Sorrow”, “Step Inside Love” and “Something Tells Me”.
In August 1967, Brian Epstein died. Prior to his death, Epstein had engineered Cilla’s transition into TV with her own variety series, ‘Cilla’ which ran on BBC1 until 1976. This marked a new phase in Cilla’s career in which she became a top rated TV host & entertainer with her husband Bobby as her Manager. Apart from providing Cilla with the opportunity to perform her music, it also showcased her endearing personality and her forte – her interaction with the general public.
Cilla’s enduring popularity into the eighties, nineties and noughties was reflected by an array of successful concert tours, pantomimes and her hosting of three prime-time TV series for ITV1: ‘Surprise!, Surprise!’ (1983-1997), ‘Blind Date’ (1985-2003) and ‘Cilla‘s Moment Of Truth’ (1998-2001) which regularly attracted audiences of over 15 million!
In January 2003, Cilla announced during a special live edition of her dating show ‘Blind Date’ that she was to quit as the host. After her surprise resignation she guest starred on various popular TV shows and was a recurring host on ITV’s lunchtime chat show ‘Loose Women’ until shortly before her untimely death in 2015.
Cilla was a trailblazer for women in British showbiz! She holds the record in Great Britain for being the No.1 selling female recording artist of the sixties, the 1st pop star to have her own TV series and the most watched female presenter of all-time having hosted more than 500 television shows!
Join us on the Official Cilla social media channels as we remember one of Great Britain’s most successful and best-loved entertainers of all time.
More Anniversary related news coming later this year…