Maria Leyden

Theatre Makeup Artist


maria-leydenMaria has worked all over the world as Makeup Artist in theatre, television, film, opera, circus, fashion, advertising, teaching and events. Since gaining a first class honours degree from The London College of Fashion in BA Costume, Technical Effects & Makeup for the Performing Arts in 2005, she’s put together a diverse portfolio of work from London, Australia and New Zealand.

In the UK, Maria’s worked on top West End shows like We Will Rock You, Billy Elliot as well as for The English National Opera. She’s also worked on BBC productions with a variety of photographers and circus troupes …not to mention live events. While in Australia, she landed a job on Priscilla Queen of the Desert -The Musical and a Makeup Artist Tutor position at Melbourne’s Academy of Makeup.

In New Zealand, she was hired to work on Spartacus: Blood and Sand and various Disney productions. She also spent time as Head of Character Makeup for The World of Wearable Arts Show and as a Makeup Tutor at the prestigious, Auckland Makeup School. Now with her feet firmly back on UK soil, Maria’s recent work has included designing makeup for the Longborough Festival Opera and running a series of special effects makeup workshops for youth film schools.

Away from her busy life as a Makeup Artist, Maria runs a business, Fancy Features, which specialises in creating custom-made giant colouring-in murals for festivals, events, weddings, charities, youth organisations, businesses and communities.

Specialist Areas


  • Theatre Makeup
  • Character Makeup
“I love the whole process of designing and developing an idea and then transforming the model into something completely different. I love inventive makeup artists that experiment and push new boundaries and play with different materials.”Maria