PUSHING 80, somewhat slimmer thanks to Jenny Craig and much more in-tune with her inner-woman, Australia’s treasured suburban housewife with the razor-sharp tongue and “wisteria hue” locks is embarking on her final homegrown tour.
Dame Edna Everage, who sashayed on to the stage in the 1950s, is exhausted – mostly from waking up in strange hotels – but insisted she was not retiring and would continue to pop up for special appearances.
“My final show (Eat Pray Laugh!) is a little journey of my life and how I’ve discovered a depth that I didn’t think I possessed,” Dame Edna said.
“I do a lot of meditating and I found my ‘real’ self. I’ve learned, darling, to love myself. I used to like myself and now I adore myself.
“I’ll try and help teach others how to do that from the stage. This isn’t just a performance, it’s group therapy.”
Community was keen to know how the outlandish senior would spend her spare time away from the spotlight.
“I won’t have any. People ask me: ‘how do you do so much?’ And I reply: ‘how do you do so little?’” she said.
Will she steal some moments to nurture her beloved gladiolis?
“Oh no, I have a farm where they are grown and some little adorable asylum seekers who tend to them.”
On the topic of weight loss, the Dame was keen to indulge.
“I’m so pleased with myself because I’m able to wear clothes I was giving to The Salvation Army. I have some beautiful frocks, all designed by my son Kenny – they would have been a bit wasted on the homeless,” she said.
But Dame Edna said she didn’t want to lose too much weight, for fear of becoming “haggard”.
On Christmas Day, she skipped the pudding and visited her husband Norm’s grave.
“I had a beautiful monument created for him, it’s marble and in the form of a prostate, because that was his problem,” she said.
Eat Pray Laugh!
Where: Crown Theatre Perth, Burswood
When: February 1-10