Sinitta (born Sinitta Renay Malone) is an American-born singer who has lived in the United Kingdom for most of her life. She is best known as a TV personality and for her hit records in the 1980s including "So Macho", "Toy Boy", "Cross My Broken Heart" and "Right Back Where We Started From". Altogether Sinitta has 14 international hit singles and three albums. She additionally acted in a number of West End shows and was a mentor on The X Factor and appeared as a contestant on the eleventh series of I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here! and the first series of Channel 4's The Jump, which sees contestants train and then compete in winter Olympic sports.
Sinitta trained at the Legat Russian Ballet School, and at LAMDA.
Sinitta began in show business by appearing in the musical The Wiz and the movie Shock Treatment released on Halloween 1981, and her West End credits include Cats, Little Shop of Horrors, Smokey Joe's Cafe, Hair, Masquerade and Mutiny! On 24 December 1982, Sinitta appeared on the TV programme The Tube as a dancer with Imagination.
In 1985, she captained one of the teams on an ITV children's game show called The Wall Game, a programme teaching children how to act.
In 1983 Sinitta released the singles ‘Break Me Into Little Pieces’ and ‘Don’t Beat Around the Bush’ with dance troupe Hot Gossip. That same year, she additionally appeared in the video of "Rock the Boat" sung by Forrest. She continued to release singles throughout 1984 and 1985, and additionally participated in 1984's A Song for Europe, the UK competition to find an entry for the Eurovision Song Contest, with "Imagination".
In June 2014, Sinitta made a musical comeback when she released her new single "So Many Men, So Little Time" with Energise Records. (See Recent Career for more).
Success with Simon Cowell
Sinitta was both Simon Cowell's and Fanfare Records's first signing. "So Macho" was recorded with producer and songwriter George Hargreaves, and was issued as a double A-side single with "Cruisin'". The single peaked at #2 in the UK charts, selling over half a million records in the UK and 1 Million worldwide, and spent 30 weeks on the UK chart. ‘So Macho’ was a hit in several additional European countries and peaked at #14 in Australia.
Stock Aitken Waterman influence
Around this time, Cowell was keen for Stock Aitken Waterman (SAW) to write and produce for Sinitta. SAW worked with Sinitta on her first single with the Hit Factory was "Toy Boy". By the time, ‘Toy Boy’ was released, Sinitta was a household name. Like, ‘So Macho’, ‘Toy Boy’ was a huge success of global proportion, selling all over Europe as well as the USA. It spent a fantastic 14 weeks in the chart and outsold Michael Jackson’s ‘I Just Can’t Stop Loving You’.
At this time Sinitta had started to date one of the backing dancers in Mutiny on The Bounty, Sam Connery. She played the love interest, Maimiti the island princess, to David Essex (as Fletcher Christian), 16 years older her senior. The papers labelled Sinitta "David's Darling" and called Cowell her Svengali. Pete Waterman loved the phrase and the song was written in ten minutes for the older singer. "Toy Boy" was a hit, reaching number four in the UK in July 1987, staying on the charts for 14 weeks.
Sinitta went on to have a further five hit singles with Pete Waterman Ltd including "G.T.O." (number 15, December 1987), "Cross My Broken Heart" (number six – March 1988), "I Don't Believe In Miracles" (number 22 – September 1988), "Right Back Where We Started From" (number four – June 1989) and "Love on a Mountain Top" (number 20 – October 1989).
Sinitta performed at London's O2 Arena in December 2012 at the Hit Factory Live concert, to celebrate 25 years of Stock Aitken Waterman. She performed with her troupe of male dancers.
Music career decline
Following the release of her début album Sinitta! in 1987, Sinitta moved away from working directly with Stock Aitken Waterman, although she continued to record at PWL under the direction of mixmasters Pete Hammond, Phil Harding and Ian Curnow. Her second album Wicked, released in 1989, contained only one SAW track – "I Don't Believe In Miracles" – the others being produced by the aforementioned Hammond, Harding & Curnow in addition to Nigel Wright and German producer Ralf Rene Maue.
As the 1990s opened, PWL music proved less popular, and her singles failed to chart high in the Top 20 of the UK chart: "Lay Me Down Easy" (number 88 – December 1989), "Hitchin' a Ride" (Number 24 – April 1990), "Love and Affection" (number 62 – September 1990), "Shame Shame Shame" (number 28 – July 1992) and "The Supreme EP" (number 49 – April 1993). Notwithstanding these songs were big hits in Japan, United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong and India, and she even had a number one American dance hit. "The Supreme EP" was the last chart single by Sinitta in the UK.
Sinitta's only studio album release throughout this period, Naughty Naughty (1995), was a collection of pop covers and received a limited release in Asia. She appeared on the cast recording album for What a Feeling, a live recording taken from the Apollo Playhouse Theatre, Edinburgh in May 1997. She replaced Irene Cara to tour with Sonia (also a former SAW artist) and Luke Goss (former Bros) in the rock and pop musicals concert, What a Feeling in 1997.
Film and television
In 1981, Sinitta starred in the film Shock Treatment. Sinitta acted in the 1986 film Foreign Body and she additionally played the lead role in The Friends by Rosa Guy. In May 2005, Sinitta performed on Hit Me Baby One More Time on ITV. In 2006, Sinitta competed on Sky1's Cirque de Celebrité and appeared on The X Factor, as part of Simon Cowell and then Louis Walsh's mentoring team. In 2006, Sinitta appeared briefly on an episode of Songs of Praise with her mother Miquel Brown.
Sinitta has additionally had a cameo appearance on daytime soap, Neighbours, appeared as a panellist on Never Mind The Buzzcocks on Phill Jupitus's team and was parodied on the comedy show, Star Stories. In March 2008, she appeared on Celebrity Wife Swap, swapping spouses with ex-Coronation Street actor Bruce Jones. On 10 April 2008, it was announced that Sinitta had joined the panellists on ITV daytime show, Loose Women.
Sinitta appeared as a contestant on ITV's 2010 series of Dancing on Ice, partnered by series regular professional Andre Lipanov.
In November 2011, she appeared as a contestant on the eleventh series of I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here!. She joined the show on day three along with Pat Sharp, the DJ. Sinitta was the second contestant to be voted out of the jungle by the public, receiving just 2.38% of the votes cast.
The X Factor
Sinitta appeared as Cowell's righthand woman at the judges' houses stage of The X Factor and she helped to choose and assist to mentor artists such as Leona Lewis, Olly Murs and One Direction.
She continued to work with Simon Cowell, as a mentor support on The X Factor, and in the 2010 series 7 show she worked with the Groups category, at judges' houses in Marbella.
With Cowell's departure from the UK version, Sinitta assisted Louis Walsh in the 2011 series 8 show with the over 25s category. On The X Factor Sinitta has worked on:
- Series 1 (2004): Over 25s (Steve Brookstein – won the show)
- Series 2 (2005): Groups (Journey South – finished third)
- Series 3 (2006): 16-24s (Leona Lewis – won the show)
- Series 4 (2007): Groups (Same Difference – finished third)
- Series 5 (2008): Boys (Eoghan Quigg – finished third)
- Series 6 (2009): Over 25s (Olly Murs – finished second)
- Series 7 (2010): Groups (One Direction – finished third)
- Series 8 (2011): Over 25s – assisted Louis Walsh (Kitty Brucknell – finished seventh)
- Series 10 (2013): Boys – assisted Louis Walsh (Nicholas McDonald – finished second)
- Series 11 (2014): Over 25s – assisted Simon Cowell (Ben Haenow – won the show) (Fleur East – finished second)
In 2009, she regularly appeared on The Xtra Factor which is ITV2's spin-off of The X Factor, interviewing contestants' friends and family. She additionally made appearances on the 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 The Xtra Factor, in which she visited one of the finalists' home towns.
In April 2002, Sinitta married Andy Willner. In November 2005, she announced that Kerry West was to be a surrogate mother for a baby with her husband. At eight weeks into the surrogacy, however, West suffered a miscarriage. She had been carrying twins. Sinitta and Willner divorced in 2010.
In early 2008, Sinitta began working with additional producers and writers, including her aunt Amii Stewart and Nate & Sangoon on new material for a potential future studio album. Sinitta's first Greatest Hits album was released on 19 October 2009. Taking the title from her 1989 smash hit single; Right Back Where We Started From – The Hits Plus Collection is a comprehensive anthology of Sinitta's recording career from 1986 until the present day. The double CD album was released by Cherry Pop Records in association with Sony Music Entertainment. Sinitta now has her own production company and talent site, Attinis (Sinitta backwards) Productions and record label BritBratPop Music.
In December 2013, Sinitta appeared on the Christmas edition Celebrity Come Dine With Me with former actress Danniella Westbrook, dancer and TV personality Louie Spence and Made In Chelsea's Hugo Taylor. In the same month, Sinitta appeared on BBC Radio 1's Innuendo Bingo.
In February 2014, Sinitta and her family took part in All Star Family Fortunes competing against McFly star Dougie Poynter and his family. They won the jackpot of £30,000.
In June 2014, Sinitta released a new single after a 22-year musical hiatus, working with Energise Records. The single, a dance track originally sung by her mother Miquel Brown, is 'So Many Men So Little Time' and was released on 23 June 2014. On the 28 June 2014, Sinitta performed her song for the first time at Pride in London.
In August 2014, Sinitta appeared on Keith Lemon's TV show, Through The Keyhole.
In January 2015, Sinitta appeared on ITV's new variety talent show, Get Your Act Together.
In August 2015, Sinitta appeared on ITV's new panel show Safeword. Notwithstanding she branded the show "vile" after the opposing team took control of her Twitter account and fabricated an autobiography, poking fun at Brad Pitt, whom Sinitta had previously dated.
- Studio albums