Legendary dame Danny La Rue, who turned cross-dressing from a subversive cabaret turn into mainstream family entertainment, has died of cancer.
At the peak of his career in the 1970s, La Rue, 81, was possibly the best paid and almost certainly the most unlikely superstar in Britain.
Almost 7 feet tall in his stilettos and feathered headdress, the devout Irish Catholic with what one obituary called “a reassuringly blokey delivery” was a regular on Saturday primetime variety shows. His main achievement was to make the art of glamorous transvestism acceptable to a mass audience.
Bob Hope once described him as “the most glamorous woman in the world.”
Born as Daniel Patrick Carroll in Cork City, Ireland, in 1927, his career soared when he came to England and TV talent spotters saw him in London’s West End clubs.
He was made an OBE in the 2002 Queen’s Birthday Honours List.