Series 7 Cast Interviews
Helen Fraser

Helen Fraser

Plays
Sylvia Hollamby

DESCRIBE YOUR CHARACTER IN A FEW WORDS:

Lazy, fearsome with a soft centre.

REMIND US WHAT HAPPENED THE LAST TIME WE SAW SYLVIA:

Sylvia caught Di Barker’s wedding bouquet and gazed longingly at Dr Nicholson.

SYLVIA HASN’T HAD A LOVE INTEREST SINCE HER BELOVED HUSBAND DIED – IS THERE HOPE FOR HER IN THIS SERIES? AND IF SO, PLEASE EXPLAIN.

Sylvia continues to try and win over Malcolm (Dr Nicholson) and although initially he gives her the cold shoulder, he begins to show some interest when he hears she may have inherited an expensive property.

IS SYLVIA DESPERATE FOR LOVE OR JUST SECURITY?

I think Sylvia is desperate for a new ballroom partner! She and Bobby were champions. She describes ballroom dancing as making love in public!

WHO DOES SYLVIA GET ON BEST WITH AT LARKHALL AND WHY?

She adores Jim Fenner and thinks he can do no wrong. She is also friendly with Di Fenner.

DO YOU THINK SYLVIA WILL EVER SHOW HER SOFTER SIDE TO THE INMATES?

She does and she has, especially when her husband Bobby died.

WHAT WAS YOUR MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT IN FILMING THIS SERIES?

I loved it when Sylvia taught Malcolm to tango when going up the stairs to bed!

NOW ON TO YOU: WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN DOING SINCE THE LAST SERIES?

I was awarded an honorary doctorate for Contribution to the Arts by the University of East Anglia, which was very flattering. I have also been doing workshops for Bad Girls The Musical and performing my own show – “An Evening with Helen Fraser”. And to top it off, I won £16,000 for my chosen charity on Who Wants to be a Millionaire.

DO YOU HAVE ANY PLANS FOR THE SUMMER?

A good rest! A lovely holiday and maybe move house.

DO YOU HAVE ANY PROJECTS LINED UP AFTER BAD GIRLS AND IF SO, WHAT ARE THEY?

Performing my own show around the country.

WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF FILMING BAD GIRLS?

The laughs are the best part of filming Bad Girls – the feeling of a close family with cast and crew

WHAT IS THE WORST?

Getting up before dawn for an early call.

WHAT IS YOUR IDEAL WAY TO SPEND A WEEKEND (WHEN YOU ARE NOT WORKING)?

I love to spend the weekend in my beloved Suffolk – having a pub lunch and a walk by the sea.

DO YOU BELIEVE GOING TO A DRAMA SCHOOL MAKES A DIFFERENCE FOR GETTING IN TO ACTING?

Drama school should make a difference. I believe everyone should learn their trade.

WHAT WOULD BE YOUR IDEAL ACTING ROLE?

I would love to appear in a big brassy musical.

IF YOU COULD INVITE THREE PEOPLE TO DINNER, DEAD OR ALIVE, WHO WOULD THEY BE?

Audrey Hepburn, Albert Finney and Alfred Hitchcock – we could discuss our next film!

DO YOU HAVE ANY ROLE MODELS – ACTING OR PERSONAL?

Dame Judi Dench – she is a real dame and a true star.
Meryl Streep – for great professionalism.
Shirley Bassey – for energy and show biz glitz.

ARE THERE ANY DIFFICULTIES/BENEFITS IN APPEARING IN SUCH A HIGH PROFILE SHOW?

One of the benefits is that the money is nice. Sylvia’s racism and dislike of homosexuals can be a problem however it is amusing as it appears Bodybag is a bit of a gay icon!

WHAT WOULD YOU IDEALLY LIKE TO ACT IN – TV/FILM/THEATRE?

All three – I do love theatre best though.

HAVE YOU BEEN INVOLVED IN ANY CHARITY WORK AS A RESULT OF APPEARING ON BAD GIRLS – DO YOU THINK YOUR PROFILE HAS ENABLED YOU TO SUPPORT VARIOUS CAUSES AND GET THEM MORE EXPOSURE?

I have been involved in lots of work for my local children’s hospice.