When Michael Walters first donned the "wisteria" coif and rhinestone glasses in early 1999, he never dreamed he would still be performing the Character today- not to mention gaining the blessing of Dame Edna's original creator, Barry Humphries or having the honor of appearing at a special event on Humphries' Birthday in 2010. Walters says he was equally surprised when he discovered that producers all over the world would be eager to present his impeccable impersonation.
Today, Michael's "One Dame" stage show gets rave reviews at venues the world over. His performances feature the outrageous comedy you'd expect from Dame Edna as well as an "Edna-graphical" narrative of show stopping Broadway numbers as only Walters can deliver.
"My 'life as Edna' started at a mystery dinner theatre in Orlando, Florida. The cast all performed multiple roles-- sort of in rotation. Everyone was having trouble with this new character they wrote; a psychotic Julia Child. They asked me to do it, and for some reason I thought 'DAME EDNA!' They got me a purple wig and a pair of rhinestone glasses- and off I went! Early on, my impersonation of The Dame was pretty tragic, but somehow or another it was a hit! I was having a blast and getting good laughs. Then strangely enough, audience members would approach me after the show and ask if they could have the character appear at their party or charity event. Always the starving artist, I leapt at the chance! The character has really evolved and become a part of me. It's always a wild ride and I'm so grateful to Barry (Humphries) for his genius."
Excerpts from www.Dame-Edna.com, the official website of Dame Edna Everage:
Dame Edna Everage is probably the most popular and gifted woman in the world today: housewife, investigative journalist, social anthropologist, talk show host, swami, children’s book illustrator, spin doctor, Megastar, and Icon. With Olivia Newton-John, Kylie Minogue and Nicole Kidman, she is one of a remarkable succession of female stars to emerge from Australia.
Her success Down Under was repeated in London with stage shows including "Housewife, Superstar",
"A Night with Dame Edna" and countless command performances for the royal family. Her hit Broadway show, "Dame Edna: The Royal Tour" received the Tony Award for Live Theatrical Event and was met with unanimous critical acclaim and sparked a huge tour of the United States in a production by the same name. Later US productions include "Back With a Vengeance" and "My First Last Tour"
Television credits include the now legendary UK special, “A Night on Mt. Edna” and two series of her own innovative chat show, “The Dame Edna Experience”, with special guests Cher, Robin Williams, Roseanne Barr, Sean Connery and Mel Gibson; as well as a popular Chat Show series entitled "The Dame Edna Treatment" which hosted the world's entertainment elite in 2007.
Her books include Dame Edna’s Coffee Table Book, Dame Edna’s Bedside Companion, and her seminal autobiography, My Gorgeous Life. Also of note are Dame Edna Everage and the Rise of Western Civilization by John Lahr, and Handling Edna by Barry Humphries; a scathing account of the personal and professional interactions between himself and his only client. Dame Edna is currently in litigation to stop the circulation of this book.
Possibly Jewish, Dame Edna is a widow, with three grown children. 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 the Founder and Governor of Friends of the Prostate and the creator of The World Prostate Olympics.
In late 2013, Dame Edna, along with her manager Barry Humphries, completed their Final Farewell Tour of Australia and The UK, and bid the United States farewell in an acclaimed 2015 National tour. While Dame Edna insists she's bidding farewell to the touring life, she promises she'll continue caring and sharing with the world in television appearances and special theatrical events. DAME EDNA IS NOT RETIRED.