Dame Edna's alter ego emerged from a different kind of closet in the latest edition or Heat magazine. Barry Humphries aka Dame Edna admitted that he is "partly Jewish." While Damn Edna could be the bastard child of Julia Child and Mike Myer's mother-in-law and frequent SNLer Linda Richman (Child contributing the Y chromosome in this scenario), who would have guessed Humphries was a canasta player?
With my background it was not spoken of, but I could play canaster without anyone teaching me, so I thought ‘well I must be Jewish!’ And I get on very well with North London people. I like the mix of scepticism and humour, and the intelligence of the average Red Sea pedestrian.
Outside of character Humphries, who is also well known for the larger-than-life Les Patterson, has been involved with cultural Jewish events.
For a number of years, he has been a patron of the Jewish Music Institute’s Suppressed Music Project, which focuses on composers who suffered under the Nazi regime.