|Michael Feinstein and Dame Edna at a blogger event to promote All About Me |
Photo: Andrew C. McGibbon
In a shocking announcement Monday at a blogger event for her new show with Michael Feinstein, All about Me, Australia’s grand-dame Dame Edna Everidge accused her long-time manager, Barry Humphries of embezzlement. “He’s got scars on his wrists he got his hands caught so many times in the cash register” said Everidge. An email seeking comment from Mr. Humphries went unanswered.
My Date with a Dame and a Queen
Dressed in her usual regal splendor, Dame Edna Everidge entered the blogger reception on the arm of the dashing Mr. Feinstein. Everidge exclaimed that she has no idea what a blogger is. She then introduced Mr. Feinstein and opened the floor to questions from the bloggers. We were given instructions that when it was our turn to ask a question that we give our “first name, religion and sexual orientation.” From the get-go she had the room in the palm of her hand. In fact, I’d venture to say that there were at most six or seven questions answered (barely) as Everidge digressed from tangent to tangent.
Peter Filichia from Theatermania.com asked Ms. Everidge if she had ever considered playing any of the great roles in the American musical theatre repertoire “Mame, Dolly, the undertaker in Oliver.” She deflected the question by stating her philosophy of HOA, Helping Other Actresses, presumably by not going up against them for these roles. When she was approached to play Queen Elizabeth in the 2006 film “The Queen” Everidge suggested that the producers ask Helen Mirren. According to Everidge, Mirren was “desperate.”
Michael Feinstein and Dame Edna
Photo: Andrew C. McGibbon
This event was the perfect event to try out parts of their new show. Everidge and Feinstein made it clear that this combined production was a reconciliation of sorts. After learning that both she and Mr. Feinstein had scheduled shows with nearly identical titles, the Shubert organization insisted that they combine the shows to save a theatre. Oddly enough, All About Me will be presented at a Roundabout Theatre, Henry Miller’s Theatre. Dame Edna made it a point to note that the theatre was named after a famous American pornographer.
Upon introducing Mr. Feinstein, Dame Edna called him a musical historian saying that no one knew as much about the American songbook as Mr. Feinstein. He replied that unfortunately, he wasn’t quite as familiar with the Australian songbook. Dame Edna corrected him that it really was more of a pamphlet. Off the top of her head Everidge named just a few of the songs in the Australian song pamphlet: “Waltzing Matilda,” “Tie My Kangaroo Down” (an homage to animal bondage), “Up with My Beer” and that old chestnut “What’s New Platypus.” She also said she would be premiering a new addition to the pamphlet during her show, the title “A Dingo Ate My Baby.”
Feinstein appears set to, and you’ll pardon the expression, play the straight man to Everidge. If you are familiar with Dame Edna’s British talk-show series, Feinstein is Ms. Everidge’s Madge Allsop. If this is anything like her last Broadway outing, for which the Tony voters “threw Tonys at her,” Dame Edna: The Royal Tour, this will undoubtedly be a riotous night at the theatre where nothing is sacred and the gladioli fly.
All About Me begins previews starting February 22nd at Henry Miller’s Theatre with an opening night of March 18th.