Columbia native comes back home with ‘Wicked’ national tour

Columbia native comes back home with ‘Wicked’ national tour

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - It doesn't take a witch to see that Joyce McGilberry has some special powers.

The Columbia native is making a triumphant return home as she leads the makeup production team for the national tour of the Broadway musical "Wicked" currently playing at the Koger Center.

McGilberry, who grew up watching her mother work as one of the only black women styling hair in an all-white women's salon, says that her mom was the main reason for her getting into the biz.

"I grew up watching her do hair and put on makeup and receive all these accolades for doing so,” McGilberry said. “So, here I am."

The makeup for the show is rigorous and, when Joyce sets to work, she means business. A custom blend of her own concoction and Mac makeup products turns the iconic "Wicked Witch of the East" green every night and she can do it in 15 minutes.

"Oh lord I can do it in 8 minutes if we need to," McGilberry said as she lathers on the green, her deft hand working with large paintbrushes, small eyelash brushes, and various tools scattered about.

McGilberry's resume of theatrical productions, movies, and television shows is numerous -- a 35-year career that she hopes one day will be her legacy both here in Columbia and all over the country.

“It means so much to me to be back here and giving back to a place that gave me so much," McGilberry said. "It’s home.”

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