Dame Edna Everage AD is a character played by Australian comedian Barry Humphries. As Dame Edna, Humphries has written several books and hosted various television shows (on which Humphries has also appeared as himself). In 1979, Dame Edna was the subject of a BBC Arena mockumentary: “La Dame aux Gladiolas”.
Dame Edna is known for her lilac-coloured hair (which she claims is natural) and over-the-top eyeglasses.
While Humphries freely states that Dame Edna is a character he plays, Dame Edna consistently denies being a fictional character or drag performer, and refers to Humphries as her “entrepreneur” or manager. Indeed, Dame Edna has frequently said that the thought of a man dressing up as a woman for entertainment purposes is repulsive.
Dame Edna’s Bio
According to Dame Edna’s autobiography, and to statements she has made, she was born Edna May Beazley in the (then) small rural town of Wagga Wagga, and started her stage career on December 19, 1955 as Mrs Norm Everage, an “average Australian housewife” from Moonee Ponds, a Melbourne suburb. When her husband, Norman Stoddard Everage, died of prostate cancer, Dame Edna became the founder and governor of a charity called Friends of the Prostate, and the creator of The World Prostate Olympics.
She spends her time visiting world leaders and jet-setting between her homes in Los Angeles, London, Sydney, Switzerland and Martha’s Vineyard. She is a friend and confidante of the Queen.
Dame Edna has three adult children: a daughter named Valmai (currently in a rehabilitation programme for shoplifters) and two sons, Bruce and Kenneth, whom she describes in a caricature of gay men, though she shows no awareness of their homosexuality. Dame Edna’s mother is incarcerated in a “maximum-security twilight home”.
Dame Edna is revered for her insights into her homeland. When asked why Australians are so good at sport she commented “Good food and diet; open air life; juicy steaks; sunshine – and the total absence of any kind of intellectual distraction.”
Smalti mosaic portraits depicting “100 Great Australian Entertainers of the Past Century”.