The popular entertainer officially retired her yellow skivvy and bow today, but not before saying goodbye to her tiny fans at a special fan event in Sydney.
“I am sad. I feel like it’s bittersweet too,” the 32-year-old told 9News reporter Mike Dalton, who attended the event.
“I’ve been with The Wiggles for 11 years now in so many different capacities. I guess I never thought I wouldn’t ever be a Wiggle but I never thought I’d have to opportunity to be a Wiggle so I’m really grateful.
“I am going to miss it.
“I am definitely going to miss the interaction with the children. Today has been a special day.”
Watkins first joined The Wiggles in 2010, playing various roles including Fairy Larissa, Wags the Dog and Dorothy the Dinosaur before officially joining as the foursome in 2012 as the first-ever female Wiggle.
And like the trailblazer she is, Watkins is now setting her sights on university, where she will complete her PhD at Sydney’s at Macquarie University that incorporates her passion for sign language, dance and film editing. Watkins also hopes to spend more time working with the Deaf community.
“I feel really ready to meet new families and hone in on my skills, learning more about movement and body expression and my passion for sign language and I’m really looking forward to researching more about that,” Watkins said.
“I’m excited to especially research more about how we can communicate with people, especially part of our Deaf community and how we can do more to make our world more accessible.”
It was back in October that Watkins first revealed she was quitting The Wiggles.
“After 11 years of performing with The Wiggles, and nine of those as the Yellow Wiggle, the time has come for me to pass the yellow skivvy on,” she said in a statement at the time. “As The Wiggles continue to evolve and someone new now steps into the yellow skivvy, I look forward to seeing children and families embrace them, just as I was when I began. I wish The Wiggles much continued success as they continue to delight children all over the world.”
Watkins will be replaced by 16-year-old dancer Tsehay Hawkins, who will join Anthony Field, Lachlan Gillespie and Simon Pryce as The Wiggles hit the road for a huge tour of Australia in 2022, which kicks off in February.
Founding member and Blue Wiggle Field said The Wiggles were “sad” upon earing of Watkins’ departure.
“We’ve had an amazing time with Emma over this period and while we’re sad to see her go, we know she has many other passions she’d like to pursue,” he said in a statement back in October.
“We thank Emma for her wonderful contribution to The Wiggles and wish her all the very best as we look forward to seeing her continued success with her other interests.”