Amanda Drew

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Amanda Drew
Born (1969-12-21) 21 December 1969 (age 47)
Boston, Lincolnshire, England
Occupation Actress
Years active 1992–present

Amanda Drew is a British actress. Drew is best known for her role as May Wright in the BBC soap opera EastEnders.


One of four children born in Lincolnshire,[1] Drew's mother was a nurse and her father was a vicar.[2][3] When her parents moved to Leicestershire for work, Drew was educated at Beauchamp College in Oadby[4] where she joined a youth theatre, playing Charity in Sweet Charity. She later attended King's School, Ottery St. Mary, when her family moved to Devon.

After graduating from RADA in 1992, Drew made her name on stage at the Royal Court Theatre and various other West End productions in both drama and comedy roles. In 2001, she joined the Royal Shakespeare Company. She has appeared on This Morning twice and BBC Breakfast News once both for interviews, and also has attended a podcast interview for The Ugly One at the Royal Court Theatre in 2008.

In March 2009 she starred in the UK premiere of Parlour Song at the Almeida Theatre. In July 2009 she took the role of Claudia Roe, a fictional amalgamation of female executives of the failed Enron Corporation, in ENRON at the Minerva Theatre, Chichester, transferring to Royal Court Theatre in October 2009 and the West End in January 2010.


Between September 2006 and June 2007, Amanda played Dr. May Wright in the BBC One soap opera EastEnders.[5] Amanda was involved in one of largest storylines of the year, a love triangle between May, her husband Rob Minter, and Dawn Swann.

May's personality has earned her the nickname "Mad May" and "Psycho Doctor" from the media.[6] Drew has described the role as "a gift of a role for any actor because of her complexity."[7] Of her return to EastEnders, she has stated: "I'm so excited to be playing her again. It'd be a shame to give too much away, but she has changed in many ways."[7] Executive producer Diederick Santer has said: "It's great to have Amanda back. May is a hugely popular character. I'm sure viewers will be keen to see what she gets up to and how she's changed."[7]

In May 2007, it was decided that the ending of a current storyline featuring characters of Dawn Swann, May and Rob Minter would be substantially rewritten due to the disappearance of toddler Madeleine McCann. The storyline would have seen May ran off with Dawn and Rob's baby shortly after it had been born.[8] The move attracted some criticism as to how it relates directly to the disappearance of the toddler;[9] the BBC defended its actions by stating that "In the current circumstances it was felt any storyline that included a child abduction would be inappropriate and could cause distress to our viewers."[8] In Amanda's final episodes, May holds Dawn hostage, intending to steal her baby by performing a caesarean section. May is arrested and Drew left the series.

Trailers for Drew's return to EastEnders, had been shown in the weeks running up to her return on BBC channels; on 6 June 2008. She reprised her role as Dr. May Wright, under the assumed name of 'Jenny'. She was seen smoking a cigarette and drinking alcohol, two new activities for the character. Her character was killed off in an explosion at the Miller's house on 18 June.[10][11]


Drew won the Outstanding Newcomer at the 2003 London Evening Standard Theatre Awards for her performance in Eastward Ho! at the Gielgud Theatre.



She also appeared in these films

Selected stage appearances[edit]



  1. ^ "The Big Interview: Amanda Drew". 19 September 2007. Retrieved 10 June 2008. 
  2. ^ "Amanda Drew's doctor dream". 6 June 2008. Archived from the original on 7 June 2008. Retrieved 10 June 2008. 
  3. ^ "20 Questions With … Amanda Drew". 10 September 2007. Retrieved 10 June 2008. 
  4. ^ A Dictionary of the RSC by Simon Trowbridge
  5. ^ Amanda Drew profile at the EastEnders' BBC site
  6. ^ "Amanda: I've never felt broody". Metro. 30 May 2007. Retrieved 6 June 2007. 
  7. ^ a b c "May's mad comeback!". Inside Soap. England. 22 April 2008. p. 11. 
  8. ^ a b "'EastEnders' axe baby abduction plot", Digital Spy. Retrieved 25 May 2007.
  9. ^ "Enders cancel Maddie plot", The Sun. Retrieved 25 May 2007.
  10. ^ "'Mad May' returns to EastEnders"
  11. ^ "May's on her way back"

External links[edit]