Encyclopedia Sabrina (Norma Ann Sykes)

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A not-so-dumb blonde with a ... TREASURE CHEST

Daily Mirror
12 November 1956

by Donald Zec

WE were reminiscing — Eamonn Andrews and I — about the biggest surprise in our lives, when the subject curved quite naturally around Sabrina.

"That girl will become one of Britain's top personalities," Eamonn forecast. "She's intelligent and learning fast."
Now the idea of Sabrina being the "Bust with the Brains" had never occurred to me.
For me, she was just a prodigious piece of chest expansion - a forty-inch substitute for earnest conversation.
But as Eamonn is no layman when it comes to beauty-spotting I went out in search of the new Sabrina.


At the piano was Mrs. Ann Stephany, her singing coach. Nearby sat Mr. Stephany, her adviser.
- Outside waited a man with carpet patterns for... Sabrina.
- Also waiting was a man with a radiogram for... Sabrina.
- And a gent with some rings... for Sabrina.

For this formidable blue-eyed blonde, christened Norma Sykes, is now earning an average of £300 a week.
She is moving into a new flat on the ritzier side of Hyde Park. She has just bought a new car.
"But that's only the beginning," she declared. "I'm using the 'Bust' as a jumping off place to bigger and better things."
"That'll be some leap," I said.
She laughed. "When you first saw me a year ago, I was just an innocent little Lancashire lass living in a fairytale world.
"I couldn't walk properly, talk properly - all I had to offer was this!"
She dropped her eyes, coyly contemplating her treasure chest.
"And now?"
"She's got poise, personality and she can sing," said Mrs Stephany, her coach.


"Sing me something," I said.
"No," said Sabrina.
"Oh, please," coaxed her coach.
"Oh , no," pouted Sabrina.
"Go on, Norm," pleaded Mr Stephany.
She hesitated. Then suddenly she rose, embraced the mike and sang "Temptation" - her hips doing a semi-quaver.
This is what she would have sung at the Royal Command Variety Show, which was cancelled.
Her low and husky delivery was surprisingly impressive for a girl who will never make the Royal Opera House.
"More s ex," whispered her coach. Sabrina did a snaky shimmer.
"Now cross your arms and slowly slide your hands upwards."
Sabrina tried this provocative manoeuvre - but got blocked half-way.
"My bust gets in the way," she complained.
(This nine-stone-six pound nymph also experimented with tap-dancing - but winces at the memory.)
"Now my plan is to concentrate on acting," she said. "Maybe one day I will make a film with Sir Laurence Olivier. You can see how all my ideas have changed. When you knew me I was really 'Non-U.' Now I'm definitely 'U.'
She frowned: "Or is it the other way round?" she asked. "Is 'U' good or is 'U' bad?"
"Ah is pretty good, honeychile," I crooned.
Requests pour in daily for Sabrina to make personal appearances all over Britain. And television offers. And a chance to fly to Las Vegas, the lush gamblers' paradise in California.
I figure this "Bust can't be quite so dumb at that.

Page Created: 28 Sept 2012

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