The Victorian government is currently in talks with the family of legendary Australian comedian Barry Humphries to discuss the possibility of arranging a state funeral to honour his contributions to the nation’s cultural landscape.
Humphries sadly passed away on Saturday, April 22 at the age of 89.
Creative Industries Minister Steve Dimopoulos said that ongoing discussions are taking place to establish the most fitting way to pay tribute to Humphries.
“The government is in conversation with his family and I want to extend my condolences to Barry Humphries’ family and everyone who loved him at a time that is very sad for them,” he told the ABC.
“We’re in conversation with his family as to the best way to honour his legacy and his contribution to Victoria so there’ll be more information to come at an appropriate time,” he added.
After the proposal was announced, there was a surge of public support in favour of holding a state funeral to commemorate the life and legacy of Humphries.
Vale Barry Humphries. State funeral alongside Father Bob would be fitting.
— Peter Campbell (@PeterCa22748591) April 22, 2023
this amazing man deserves a State Funeral, infact a National Memorial Day to honour the legacy and gift that Barry Humphries is, a truly remarkable man who entertained so many worldwide
— Linda Hardy???????? (@LindaAHardy) April 22, 2023
Without question the funniest most brilliant of entertainers EVER. Spent a few hours last night watching clips on UTube of the great man, absolutely hilarious. What a loss and if ever a state funeral was in order this is it! VALE Barry Humphries #HelloPossums pic.twitter.com/1hnmunHf3j
— ????⚪️⚫️???????????????? (@BulldogCentral) April 22, 2023
State funeral for Barry Humphries ? I hope so ????
— Debbie Daskey (@Mohumpcamelhard) April 23, 2023
Following a fall at his home in Sydney in February, Humphries was readmitted to the hospital due to complications following hip surgery. Sadly, it was there that the comedic genius behind the beloved characters of Dame Edna Everage and Sir Les Patterson passed away.
“It is with great sadness that we announce that Barry Humphries passed away peacefully in Sydney, Australia today. He was surrounded by his family,” his publicist confirmed in a statement.
“He was completely himself until the very end, never losing his brilliant mind, his unique wit and generosity of spirit.
“With over seventy years on the stage, he was an entertainer to his core, touring up until the last year of his life and planning more shows that will sadly never be. His audiences were precious to him, and he never took them for granted.
“Although he may be best remembered for his work in theatre, he was a painter, author, poet, and a collector and lover of Art in all its forms. He was also a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, and a friend and confidant to many. His passing leaves a void in so many lives.
“The characters he created, which brought laughter to millions, will live on.
“We ask that everyone please respect the family’s privacy during this very difficult time.”
Humphries is survived by his wife Lizzie, his children Tessa, Emily, Oscar and Rupert, and 10 grandchildren.