Maria Aitken

Maria Aitken, born Maria Penelope Katharine Aitken is an English Film Actress, Theatre Director, Teacher and Writer.

Maria Aitken | Maria Aitken Picture | A Fish Called Wanda |
Maria Aitken


Born: September 12, 1945 in Dublin, Ireland

Spouse: Patrick McGrath (m. 1991), Nigel Davenport (m. 1972-1981), Richard Durden (m. 1968-1971)

Children: Jack Davenport

Education: University of Oxford, Sherborne Girls School

Zodiac Sign: Virgo

Height: 5′ 10″ (1.78 m)

Books: A Girdle Round the Earth, Acting in Restoration Comedy, Women Adventures: Travelers, Explorers and Seekers


Maria Aitken graduated from Oxford with a degree in English Language and Literature and has directed several plays in the West End and on Broadway. Her production of The 39 Steps, which ran in London for nine years, also played three years on Broadway and won Olivier and Tony Awards. In 2011 she directed Frank Langella in Man and Boy on Broadway. She is a Visiting Lecturer at Yale, NY and Juilliard drama schools and her extensive acting career includes leading roles at the Royal National Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company and in the West End.

Her movie career includes appearances in Doctor Faustus (1967), Mary, Queen of Scots (1971), Half Moon Street (1986), A Fish Called Wanda (1988), The Fool (1990), The Grotesque (1995), Fierce Creatures (1997), Jinnah (1998) and Asylum (2005). Aitken was nominated for a BAFTA Award for her role as Wendy in A Fish Called Wanda. She is the author of A Girdle Round the Earth, a story of some of the more remarkable women travelers of the last 200 years, and Style: Acting in High Comedy, published in 1996. She has been a patron of the British Thyroid Foundation since 1992 and was appointed a Trustee of the Noel Coward Foundation in 2012.


Some Girls Do (1969)

Mary, Queen of Scots (1971)

Moths (1977)

A Fish Called Wanda (1988)

The Fool (1990)

The Grotesque (1995)

Fierce Creatures (1997)

Jinnah (1998)

Asylum (2005)