A pantomime dame is a traditional role in British pantomime. It is a continuation of travesti portrayal of female characters by male actors in drag. They are often played either in an extremely camp style, or else by men acting 'butch' in women's clothing. They wear big make up and big hair, have exaggerated physical features, and perform in a melodramatic style. While not from pantomime, possibly the best known of this type of character is Dame Edna Everage whose name plays on two meanings of dame: this tradition and the title equivalent to Sir.[1]

John Inman was a notable pantomime dame, particularly in his later years.


  1. Pantomime dame

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