Encyclopedia Sabrina (Norma Ann Sykes)

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Sabrina Figures It Out

The Argus (Melbourne) - 2 July 1955
Daily Mirror - 25 April 1955

Sabrina Figures It Out

LONDON, Friday: One evening, not long ago, a buxom blonde, weighing 10st and saying nothing, appeared without warning on television.

The effect was as shattering as a blow between the eyes. Or maybe two blows.

Sabrina Chairs were hitched for ward, pictures more sharply focused, never were cathode ray tubes so closely scrutinised.

Sabrina had arrived -- 140 lb. of proud girlhood, 39.5 in. of it above the waist.

She said nothing. She did nothing.

But she must have done it rather well.

For since then Sabrina has:

Received six proposals of marriage. (One enthusiast wrote: "We could make £500 million together.")

Had a coffee bar and two monkeys named after her.

Had invitations to open fetes, present prizes, model bathing suits,all for a hundred guineas or more an appearance.

And now she is going to make a film.

The Argus article stops there, but on the Daily Mirror of 25 April 1955 we get the extra goods...

So I phoned Sabrina. and asked her to meet me in a Park-lane hotel. " I'd like to," she said. " But how will you know me?' I didn't quite know how to answer that one. "Come over to my place for tea instead." she suggested.
Sabrina, real name Norma Syfces, lives in a modest private hotel at Earls Court, London. I found her sitting on the floor of a tiny first-floor bedroom. Her father was in a chair reading her fan mail.

Her mother sat on the bed and poured the tea. Sabrina is chubby-faced, has a Lancashire accent, mauve fingernails, and curling, inch-long eyelashes.
"They're mine," she said, smiling. I bought them myself."
Sabrina's parents now live in a caravan at Crystal Palace. They've left their Blackpool home to take over Sabrina's career, which is developing into quite a treasure chest. "All this business has struck me like a thunderbolt," Sabrina said.

What with drama coaching, singing lessons, elocution and all these engagements ... I'm just in a whirl."
"How's your drama coming along?" I asked her.
"Well, first of all the teacher is going to get rid of my Lancashire accent," she said. "Then he wants to get my voice much lower. You know," she giggled. "a bit sexier.
"At the moment," said Sabrina. "my voice is so high it squeaks when I raise I raise it."
"And your singing?"
"Well, I'm tone deaf at present," Sabrina said, "but I'm improving."

The phone rang, Sabrina went to answer it and returned all smiles.
"Another job," she announced. "A hundred guineas to appear in one of those 'What the Butler Saw' gadgets."
"What are you going to do with all the money you're making?" I asked.
"She'll give it to her Dad," said her Dad.
I asked Sabrrlna If she could explain how all she clamour started. She blushed. "Perhaps it's because I say nothing?" she suggested.

I said nothing
"Or maybe ... er ...personality?" she asked.
I was as silent as Sabrina
"I'm trying to be coy — but I don't think it's getting over," she said. It can only be the ... er ... figure? ... eh?"

"Well, I'm two inches more than Jane Russell and one more than Monroe," said Sabrina.
"But I don't have much time for boy friends," said the eighteen-year-old Miss Sykes. "My career is going to come first."
Just what sort of career the good-natured, strapping Sabrina will have is anybody's guess.
But I think she'll have a lot of fun — and make a lot of money — finding out

By Donald Zec

Page Created: 31 Oct 2011

Last Changed: Sunday, April 10, 2016 12:58 PM

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