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Tracy-Ann Oberman is an English actress, playwright and narrator. She is widely known for roles including Chrissie Watts in the BBC soap opera EastEnders (2004–2005) and Valerie Lewis or “Auntie Val” in the Channel 4 sitcom Friday Night Dinner (2011–2020).
Following training at the Central School of Speech and Drama in London, Oberman spent four years with the Royal Shakespeare Company, before joining the National Theatre. Her theatrical experience includes appearing with Kenneth Branagh in David Mamet’s Edmond (2003) and a run in the West End revival of Boeing-Boeing (2007–2008). She appeared in a production of Earthquakes in London in its 2011 run as Sarah Sullivan. Oberman has performed in more than 600 radio plays since the mid-1990s.
Oberman’s TV credits have also included Doctor Who, Mistresses, Robin Hood, and Doctors. Before EastEnders, Oberman appeared in a variety of television programmes including Casualty (1997–1998), Kiss Me Kate (1998), and The Bill (2000), and carved out a comedic niche with leading roles in Bob Martin (2000–2001), Lenny Henry In Pieces (2000–2003), Big Train (2002), and Toast of London (2013–2015). She had a recurring role in the penultimate and last series of procedural comedy-drama New Tricks (2014–2015) as Fiona Kennedy, a forensic pathologist. Oberman appeared in Tracey Ullman’s Show and Tracey Breaks the News from 2016 to 2018.
Oberman has contributed to several radio sketch shows and, in 2008, co-authored with Diane Samuels the play 3 Sisters on Hope Street. In 2010, she wrote and starred alongside Catherine Tate in her BBC Radio 4 play Bette and Joan and Baby Jane and in 2012 wrote the BBC Radio 4 play Rock and Doris and Elizabeth. In 2015 she wrote and starred in the third part of her Hollywood Trilogy for BBC Radio 4, Mrs. Robinson, I Presume, alongside John Simm and Kevin Bishop. Oberman was a regular columnist for The Guardian newspaper during 2007, for which she is still an occasional contributor. She was a regular contributor to The Jewish Chronicle (2009–2017) and also contributes to Red magazine.