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Dame Edna Creator Barry Humphries Dies In Sydney At 89

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CANBERRA, Australia – Barry Humphries, Tony Award-winning comedian known for his outrageous theatrical character, Dame Edna Everage, a condescending and thinly disguised snob whose changing character has charmed audiences for seven decades, has died. He was 89.

His family confirmed his death in a Sydney hospital where he had spent several days due to complications after hip surgery.

According to a family statement, “he was completely himself until the very end, never losing his brilliant mind, unique wit, and generosity of spirit.”

“He was an entertainer to the core, touring up until the last year of his life and planning more shows that will sadly never be,” they continued.

Humphries had resided in London for decades before returning to his native Australia for Christmas.

He told The Sydney Morning Herald last month that his treatment after his accident and hip replacement had been “agony.”

“It was the most absurd thing, as are all domestic incidents.” “I was reaching for a book when my foot got caught on something, and I fell,” Humphries explained his incident.

Humphries has continued to perform as a performer, touring the United Kingdom last year with his one-man show “The Man Behind the Mask.”

Dame Edna began as dowdy Mrs. Norm Everage, who first appeared on stage in Humphries’ hometown of Melbourne in the mid-1950s. Humphries found postwar suburbia immobility and cultural blandness suffocating.

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“Farewell, Barry Humphries, you comedy genius,” Ricky Gervais, a British comedian, tweeted.

Edna is one of Humphries’ most memorable characters. Sir Les Patterson, an ever-drunk, unkempt, and lecherous Australian cultural attache, is the second most famous.

Patterson reflected Humphries’ and many other renowned Australian intellectuals’ perception of Australia as a Western cultural wasteland.

Humphries, a law school dropout, had significant success as an actor, writer, and entertainer in the United Kingdom in the 1970s, but the United States remained elusive.

In the United States, he received a Tony Award in 2000 for his Broadway production “Dame Edna: The Royal Tour.”

Australia’s Prime Minister Anthony Albanese paid tribute to the legendary comedian.

“For 89 years, Barry Humphries entertained us through a galaxy of personas, from Dame Edna to Sandy Stone,” Albanese tweeted, referring to one of Humphries’ most enduring characters, the gloomy and meandering Stone. “But Barry was always the brightest star in that galaxy.” He was both gifted and a gift, a wonderful wit, satirist, writer, and an amazing one-of-a-kind.”

“Farewell, Barry Humphries, you comedy genius,” Ricky Gervais, a British comedian, tweeted.

“One of the funniest people I have ever met,” said Piers Morgan, a British television personality.

Morgan called Morgan a “wonderfully intelligent, entertaining, daring, provocative, mischievous comedy genius.”

Humphries was also a well-known character actor with several stage and cinema appearances, the author of novels and an autobiography, and an exceptional landscape painter.

On February 17, 1934, John Barry Humphries was born in Melbourne. His parents were content, loving, and strict, and they must have worried about their eldest son, Sunny Sam. His mother always told him not to bring attention to himself.

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On February 17, 1934, John Barry Humphries was born in Melbourne.

Humphries was more interested in art and secondhand bookshops than sports before graduating from Melbourne Grammar School. At 16, his favorite author was Franz Kafka, and he subsequently stated that he “felt a little foreign.”

He studied Dadaism, a subversive, anarchic, and absurdist European art movement, for two years at Melbourne University.

“Puss In Boots,” waterproof rubber boots filled with custard, and, on the performance art side, going on a tram with a supposedly blind accomplice whom Humphries would kick in the shins while saying, “Get out of my way, you disgusting blind person,” were among his contributions.

He moved to London in 1959 and began working at Peter Cook’s comedy club, The Establishment. In 1960, he played Sowerberry in the first London production of “Oliver!” and reprised the role on Broadway. In “Treasure Island,” he co-starred alongside Spike Milligan and William Rushton.

In 1964, Humphries collaborated with New Zealand artist Nicholas Garland to create the Barry McKenzie comic strip for the satirical magazine Private Eye.

The Australian government prohibited the book version of the cartoons because it “relied on indecency for its humor.” Humphries expressed satisfaction at the attention and pleaded with officials not to relax the restriction.

Humphries’ drinking had gotten out of hand by this point. In late 1970, he was charged with being drunk and unruly in Melbourne. He finally admitted himself to an alcoholism hospital for therapy that would transform him into a lifetime abstainer.

Despite the earlier restriction, the first Barry McKenzie film was released in 1972, with financial help from the Australian government. It was panned by critics, who were worried about what the world’s first film to feature beer-induced vomiting would do to Australia’s reputation abroad.

However, it was a tremendous success, and a sequel two years later had then-Prime Minister Gough Whitlam knighting McKenzie’s aunt, Edna.

He was married four times and left behind his wife, Lizzie Spender, four children, and ten grandchildren.

SOURCE – (AP)

Kiara Grace is a staff writer at VORNews, a reputable online publication. Her writing focuses on technology trends, particularly in the realm of consumer electronics and software. With a keen eye for detail and a knack for breaking down complex topics, Kiara delivers insightful analyses that resonate with tech enthusiasts and casual readers alike. Her articles strike a balance between in-depth coverage and accessibility, making them a go-to resource for anyone seeking to stay informed about the latest innovations shaping our digital world.

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Dickey Betts, Co-Founder Of The Allman Brothers Band, Dead At 80

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Dickey Betts, a guitarist and co-founder of the Allman Brothers Band, has died, according to a family statement released to CNN on Thursday by his longtime manager.

Betts was eighty.

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Dickey Betts, Co-Founder Of The Allman Brothers Band, Dead At 80

“It is with profound sadness and heavy hearts that the Betts family announces the peaceful passing of Forrest Richard ‘Dickey’ Betts,” according to the statement. “The well-known performer, songwriter, bandleader, and family patriarch passed away this morning at his home in Osprey, Florida, with his family by his side. Dickey was larger than life, and his absence will be felt around the world. During this terrible time, the family requests prayers and respect for their privacy in the coming days. More information will be provided at the proper time.”

Betts’ manager, David Spero, told Rolling Stone that the guitarist had cancer and chronic obstructive lung disease.

Betts, who was born in West Palm Beach, Florida, grew up listening to bluegrass, country music, and, subsequently, rock & roll. Betts, bass guitarist Berry Oakley, drummers Butch Trucks and Jaimoe, and brothers Gregg and Duane Allman formed the Allman Brothers Band in 1969, and are credited with helping create the sound and genre of Southern rock in the 1960s and 1970s.

Betts composed and sung the band’s biggest song, “Ramblin’ Man.” Initially, he created the song with the intention of having another artist sing it.

“I was going to send ‘Ramblin’ Man’ to Johnny Cash,” Betts stated in 2020, later adding that he “thought it was a great song for him.”

“But everyone liked the song. Even my father enjoyed the song before we recorded it or anything. And I’m thinking I’ll email this to Johnny Cash and see if he wants to perform it,” he added. “The producer (Johnny Sandlin) mentioned that we needed another song for the record and asked if I had any. I explained, ‘Well, I got one, but I was going to send it to Nashville for Cash to record.’ He said, ‘Let’s hear it. And then, ‘No! We gotta do it.'”

Betts also wrote the popular Allman Brothers songs “Blue Sky” and “Jessica.”

Duane Allman died in a motorcycle accident in 1971, and Oakley died in a motorcycle crash the following year. Betts and Gregg Allman became the band’s leaders, but creative disputes and substance misuse prompted the group to split up and reform several times.

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Dickey Betts, Co-Founder Of The Allman Brothers Band, Dead At 80

Cameron Crowe, then 16, followed the Allman Brothers Band on tour in 1973 for a Rolling Stone cover story that would later serve as the basis for Crowe’s Oscar-winning 2000 film “Almost Famous.” In 2017, Crowe described Billy Crudup’s key rock star character as “a tribute” to Betts.

In an email to CNN later that day, Crowe referred to Betts as “a guitarist for the ages, the musical glue that held together The Allman Brothers Band for many years.”

“Dickey’s quiet warmth, and his timeless contribution to American music was a big inspiration for our film,” said the writer-director.

Betts quit the Allman Brothers Band in a widely publicized separation in 2000. While the band continued to tour for nearly 15 years and issued one more studio album, Betts performed with his Great Southern ensemble, which included his son Duane, and released another studio album of new songs. Betts retired in 2014.

Also on Friday, the Allman Brothers Band issued an official statement, stating that Betts’ “extraordinary guitar playing alongside guitarist Duane Allman created a unique dual guitar signature sound that became the signature sound of the genre known as Southern Rock.”

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Dickey Betts, Co-Founder Of The Allman Brothers Band, Dead At 80

“He was passionate in life, be it music, songwriting, fishing, hunting, boating, golf, karate or boxing,” the statement went on to say. “Dickey was all in on and excelled at anything that caught his attention.”

When asked what he enjoyed most about music, Betts told the Sarasota Herald Tribune in 2020 that it was the impact it had on his listeners.

“I like the crowds mainly, and what the music did for them,” he went on to say. “They enjoyed the music more than I did. I just love how the crowd can drift off into another universe during a concert.”

SOURCE – (CNN)

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Taylor Swift Drops 15 New Songs On Double Album, ‘The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology’

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NEW YORK — Could there be a Taylor Swift new album release without any added surprises?

No.

On Friday, the pop star released her 11th album, “The Tortured Poets Department,” which is an amalgamation of her previous work and reflects the artist who, at the height of her powers, has spent the last few years re-recording her life’s work and touring it, filtered through synth-pop anthems, breakup ballads, provocative and matured considerations.

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Taylor Swift Drops 15 New Songs On Double Album, ‘The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology’

But it was midnight. At 2 a.m. Eastern, she released “The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology,” which included 15 new songs.

“I’d written so much tortured poetry in the past 2 years and wanted to share it all with you, so here’s the second installment,” Swift wrote in an Instagram caption. “And now the story isn’t mine anymore… it’s all yours.”

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Taylor Swift Drops 15 New Songs On Double Album, ‘The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology’

The songs are a natural continuation of the first half of the album, with many returning to her “evermore” and “folklore” style, aided by her partner Aaron Dessner.

Swift has surprised her fans before, and she has surely done so with a surprise album release. A few months after “folklore” was released in 2020, she revealed that “evermore” will be available at midnight on the same day. Speaking of midnight, she released a “3am” edition of “Midnights” with seven new tracks in 2022, just a few hours after the original release.

Taylor Swift’s album “The Tortured Poets Department” is now available.

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Taylor Swift Drops 15 New Songs On Double Album, ‘The Tortured Poets Department: The Anthology’

Music Writer Maria Sherman describes it as “an amalgamation of an artist who has spent the last few years re-recording her life’s work and touring its material, filtered through synth-pop anthems, breakup ballads, provocative and matured subject matter.”

Swift revealed a surprise two hours after the album’s release: 15 more tracks.

Swift’s first original album since her record-breaking Eras Tour debuted last year.

SOURCE – (AP)

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Britain’s Prince Harry Formally Confirms He is Now a US Resident

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LONDON — Prince Harry, King Charles III’s son and fifth in line to the British throne, has publicly certified that he is now a US resident.

Four years after Harry and his American bride, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, moved to a villa in Southern California, a travel firm he owns filed paperwork this week alerting British officials that he has relocated and is now “usually resident” in the United States.

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Britain’s Prince Harry formally confirms he is now a US resident

The formal acknowledgment highlights the prince’s growing isolation from Britain, following his and Meghan’s departure from royal duties to chase lucrative media partnerships in America. Since then, Harry has often challenged the royal family, including claims of unconscious racism made in a Netflix series and the prince’s autobiography, “Spare.”

Travalyst Ltd, a company created in 2020 to “promote global awareness of the importance of sustainable tourism,” filed the paperwork. Harry owns at least 75% of the company. Companies House, the government body in charge of overseeing company incorporation in the United Kingdom, received the papers on Monday.

The filing further distinguishes Harry from his status as one of the king’s counselors of state, which are members of the royal family who can be deputized to carry out the monarch’s duties if he is ill or away from the nation.

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Britain’s Prince Harry formally confirms he is now a US resident

While Harry is still a counselor of state, the crown warned Parliament in 2022 that “in practice” only working members of the royal family will be called upon to fill in for the monarch.

Although Harry and Meghan, also known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, have established themselves in the rich enclave of Montecito, where they are raising their baby son and daughter, Harry is also under investigation for his US status.

The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think organization, has questioned the Department of Homeland Security’s decision to grant Harry a visa to the United States following drug-related admissions in “Spare.”

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Britain’s Prince Harry formally confirms he is now a US resident

The organization, which has petitioned a judge to order the department to release Harry’s immigration records, claims that the prince either lied on his visa application or was given preferential treatment because a history of drug usage would typically preclude an applicant from receiving a visa.

SOURCE – (AP)

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