Sylvestra is originally from Jersey in the Channel Islands, off the coast of France, where her family has lived for many generations. She was a child actress, appearing in Doctor Who Dixon of Dock Green
and The Boy from Space
, and later went on to become a successful screen and stage actress.
Sylvestra is married to the Welsh actor Owen Teale and they have two daughters, Eliza and Grace. They live in south London.
Sylvestra's recent theatre credits include the role of Dr Pitt in Wild East at the Royal Court, London (1 February to 10 March 2005), and the part of Jane in a revival of Michael Frayn's Benefactors at the Albery Theatre, London (June-September 2002). Before that, she was last seen in the West End in a revival of Noel Coward's Hay Fever, in which she played Myra Arundel (Savoy Theatre, June-September 1999). She has appeared many times with the Royal Shakespeare Company, including Jonathan Miller's 1996 production of A Midsummer Night's Dream
at the Almeida Theatre and Simon Callow's of Les Enfants du Paradis
at the Barbican the same year.
In 1992, Sylvestra played the lead part of the struggling actress Negina in a London revival of Ostrovsky's 1882 play Artists and Admirers (The Pit, London, October-December 1992).
Sylvestra also starred as Frances Butler in the BBC Radio 4 six-part comedy drama serial Faithful Departed (2002).
Another radio serial, Speaking For Themselves, the Personal Letters of Winston and Clementine Churchill, starring Sylvestra as Clementine, was first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 from July 26th to August 6th 1999. Speaking For Themselves is now available on CD from BBC Radio Collection, ISBN 0563553219.
On the Penguin audiobooks news front, Sylvestra plays Mistress Ford in The Merry Wives of Windsor.