Home Features Spotlight On: Irish actress and model Hannah Rose May

Spotlight On: Irish actress and model Hannah Rose May

The Meath native opens up about success, and how she proved her old school teacher wrong...

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For this week’s Spotlight On feature, we chatted to Irish actress and model Hannah Rose May.

Since moving to Los Angeles back in 2016, the Meath native has landed roles in huge shows like Shooter, Ballers and Altered Carbon.

In 2019, Hannah was also chosen as the new face of Guess clothing, but her road to success hasn’t always been straightforward…

Hannah recently shared a comment she received from an old school teacher, who basically told her she would never make it as a model.

Her post received a huge response on social media, as other people shared how their own teachers discouraged them from following their dreams too.

During an exclusive interview with Goss.ie, Hannah explained how she was reminded of the teacher’s comment after a former classmate reached out to her online. 

“It was funny because it was something that was so major to me but I didn’t realise that it had also impacted somebody else,” she said.

“Because you know when something seems so big to you but you think nobody else paid attention to it. It was crazy to hear that that was something she remembered because it stuck with me.”

“After that, that’s when my social anxiety developed like really heavily like I felt like I had no other option but to proceed with this [modelling].”

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“If anything, it was a driving force behind me to like prove to that teacher that like no this is going to last, I’m going to do this. If anything, it pushed me away, so yeah, I felt like at the time I had no other option but to jump ship,” she confessed.

“A lot more is happening in Ireland today than it was 10 years ago. You can make a living being a model in Ireland now and travelling to London and do those things but at the time the industry wasn’t what it is now.”

“When the girl sent me that message where she remembered the comment from the teacher and I posted it, I was flooded with the responses, I got around 850 messages from people who had something similar.”

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“It’s funny because I feel like we all feel like we’re alone but once you say something you realise, you’re not alone and a lot of people are feeling the same way.”

“It became a much bigger conversation and I don’t ever want to say like ‘oh teachers are the problem’ because I had many wonderful teachers, I really did. But I think it’s all a matter of how they take their teaching.”

“After the teacher made that comment, I started avoiding going to her class, I started coming into school late so that I accidentally would miss her class, I started being ill so I didn’t have to go to her class.”

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“At every opportunity that I could miss that class, I would. All it did was destroy whatever result I could’ve possibly got.”

“It wasn’t a word of encouragement whatsoever, she made a statement having no knowledge of my life and it stuck with me and made a massive impact and it wasn’t for the better.”

“All she did was make a comment that turned me off that class entirely and that started the downhill spiral of anxiety attacks and pressure.”

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Years later, Hannah has well and truly proved that teacher wrong by carving a successful career for herself in Hollywood.

 

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A post shared by HANNAH ROSE MAY🌹 (@hannahrosemay_)

When asked if she has any advice for people hoping to pursue a career in modelling, the Meath native said: “First off, make sure you really want to do it…”

Hannah explained: “I think Instagram makes everything look very glossy, but modelling is difficult.”

“I know that people think going on set and getting your photos taken or having your hair and makeup done is nice, but nobody ever talks about the severe amount of rejection that you suffer with on a daily basis.”

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“I’m surrounded by some of the most beautiful people in the world, and I’ve never came across so much insecurity because we’re constantly picked apart and then we’re also put against each other.”

 

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“It’s a constant comparison game and when you’re 18/19… this is your sole livelihood, so I wouldn’t tell anyone to do it on a whim, it’s a big commitment.”

“Not only for your time because you have to go to 15/16 castings a day, you have to commit to seasons. It all sounds great, but you never really have one foot on the ground and you miss a lot of things. You have to give up a lot…”

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“You gain a lot and I’m so grateful for the life experience. [But] I wish I did get to start a bit later because you’re so young and naive, but at the end of the day I really got thrown into the deep end that it moulded who I am today.”

 

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As for what she’s working on at the moment, Hannah teased: “I don’t know how much I can say or not say right now, but right before the lockdown I shot a movie that will soon be announced for a major streaming network.”

“It’s a college thriller. I play the cliché American mean girl, which was fun.”

There’re some good things in the works and probably not something someone would expect of me to do. But yeah, hopefully all can be announced soon.”

In other exciting news, the actress got engaged last year to her American boyfriend Spencer Strasmore.

 

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A post shared by HANNAH ROSE MAY🌹 (@hannahrosemay_)

Speaking about their wedding, Hannah confirmed: “We’re getting married in Ireland, of course, I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

“My mam is dying to go look at venues for me, she’s kind of my eyes and ears on the ground right now but obviously a lot of places aren’t showing.”

 

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A post shared by HANNAH ROSE MAY🌹 (@hannahrosemay_)

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