John Barry Humphries the 78 year old Australian comedian satirist and Dadaist artist renowned for his on-stage character and alter egos Dame Edna Everage and Sir Les Patterson, has announced the pending retirement of the Dame and Sir Les. The Dame Edna character is famous for her ‘Wiseria hue’ (lilac) coloured hair along with the “face furniture” cat eye glasses, her favourite “gladdies” flowers (gladiolas) and repetition greeting “Hello Possums”. The character evolved from an ultra conservative drab Melbourne housewife of the 1950’s that satirized the suburbia of Australia, into an outlandish character “Megastar” with her elevation of a ‘Damehood’ as her popularity grew internationally. Humphries in his character as Dame Edna has interviewed many celebrities on chat shows, treating them as ordinary people, satirizing the celebrity cult with a mix of prudishness and class snobbery. On the pending retirement, Humphries stated “Edna will crop up on television I guess but not in a live show, the fact of the matter is that I’m beginning to feel a bit senior. It’s the best aerobics you could do, leaping around on stage, but it’s grueling when there are other things to do.”


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