Australian comedian, Barry Humphries rose to popularity for writing and playing his stage and television characters Dame Edna Everage and Sir Les Patterson. Also, he was an actor, author, and satirist.

Picture of Australian comedian, Barry Humphries
Caption: Picture of Australian comedian, Barry Humphries (Photo: skynews) 

When was Barry Humphries Born?

On February 17, 1934, he was born in Kew, a suburb of Melbourne, Australia. His birth name, John Barry Humphries. Barry was the son of parents Eric Humphries and Louisa Humphries. His father Eric worked as a construction manager. He had a joyful early life with his parents, who dubbed him "Sunny Sam" and gave him everything he wanted.

Since his early age, Humphries has enjoyed entertaining others, and these modest traits prepared him for a successful career in the entertainment industry. He enrolled at the ‘Camberwell Grammar School’ in Canterbury, Melbourne. Thereafter, Barry studied at ‘Melbourne Grammar School’ located in South Yarra and Caulfield, Melbourne. He studied philosophy, fine arts, and law at Queen's College, a part of the University of Melbourne, but left after two years.

Career of Humphries

He became a member of the brand-new "Melbourne Theatre Company" (MTC), set up by John Sumner in the year 1953. He created Edna Everage as a fictional character for the first time in 1955 for a comedy. On December 12, 1955, the theatrical production "Olympic Hostess" at the "Union Theatre" of "Melbourne University". In 1957, he moved to Sydney and started performing at the "Philip Street Revue Theatre," which went on to become a well-known venue for parody and sarcastic comedy. He resurrected the "Olympic Hostess" at the "Philip Street Revue Theatre," and Edna the Hostess appeared to be a smash, as it ran for fourteen months with eight performances each week. He performed on stage multiple times while traveling around Australia, Germany, the Netherlands, Scandinavia, the Middle East, and the Far East.

Barry Humphries posing for the picture
Caption: Barry Humphries posing for the picture (Photo: cnn)

He created a cartoon strip ‘The Wonderful World of Barry McKenzie’. He compiled into a book published in London but saw a ban in Australia. Barry made his film debut with a cameo in the film ‘Bedazzled’ in the year 1967. He appeared in many other films in supporting and cameo roles such as ‘Percy's Progress’ in 1974, ‘The Great Macarthy’ in 1975, ‘Side by Side’ in 1975, ‘The Getting of Wisdom’ in 1977, ‘Dr. Fischer of Geneva’ in 1985 and ‘Napoleon’ in 1995. Barry lent his voice in films such as ‘Finding Nemo’ in 2003 as ‘Bruce’, ‘The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey’ in 2012 as ‘Great Goblin’ and ‘Justin and the Knights of Valour’ in 2013 as ‘Braulio’. The one-man satirical theatrical revues, in which he mostly played the roles of Edna Everage, Les Patterson, and Sandy Stone, continued to be his specialty.

Barry Humphries performing on the stage
Caption: Barry Humphries performing on the stage (Photo: nyt)

His monologue shows include ‘A Night with Dame Edna’ in 1979; ‘An Evening's Intercourse with Dame Edna’ in 1982; ‘Edna, The Spectacle’ in 1998; ‘Back with a Vengeance’ in 2007, and ‘Dame Edna Live: The First Last Tour’ in 2009. In addition to two seasons of the comedy discussion show "The Dame Edna Experience" (first season from September to December 1987 and second season from November to December 1989), Barry Humphries' Flashbacks, a social history series, and the comedy chat show "The Dame Edna Treatment," both of which aired in 1999, are among his television performances.

Barry Humphries Net Worth

Barry Humphries had an estimated net worth of $12 Million at the time of his death. He earned most of his wealth from his on-stage. Also, he worked as a successful scriptwriter, film producer, and actor in the London West End Musical Theatre.

Barry Humphries posing for the picture with the car
Caption: Barry Humphries posing for the picture with the car (Photo: The Sun)

He made money through writing scripts, playing parts in movies and plays, and writing books, including his award-winning autobiography. Also, he had lived a lavish life when he was alive. 

Barry Humphries' Personal Life

At the age of 21, Barry Humphries got married to his wife Brenda Wright in the year 1955. Later, the duo's married life ended after two years. In the year 1959, he got married to his 2nd wife Rosalind Tong. They became parents of two daughters Tessa and Emily. The couple got divorced in 1970 after 11 years of marriage. Again, he got married to his third wife Diane Millstead in the year 1979. Likewise, they welcomed their two sons, Oscar and Robert.

Barry Humphries with his wife Lizzie Spender
Caption: Barry Humphries with his wife Lizzie Spender (Photo: The Sun)

In the year 1989, Barry and Diane got divorced after ten years of their marriage. His fourth wife, Lizzie Spender, daughter of poet Sir Stephen Spender. He along with his fourth wife Lizzie lived in a terraced townhouse in West Hampstead, North London for over 30 years. Humphries revealed the secret to his lengthy marriage to Spender.

"I'm a bit smarter now. "The truth is I'm not a very easy person to be married to." 


Barry Humphries Cause of Death

On April 22, 2023, he passed away at the age of 89. Barry's cause of death following complications from hip surgery at St Vincent's Hospital in Sydney. After suffering a hip injury due to a fall. 

Picture of Barry Humphries doing make-up
Caption: Picture of Barry Humphries doing make-up (Photo: telegraph)

In Sydney's St Vincent's Hospital, he passed away alongside his family. Just a few days before he passed away, Barry was discharged from the hospital but had to return due to complications after a hip surgery.

Barry Humphries Height

Barry Humphries had a height of 5 feet 10 inches tall.