Chicago: Talk show queen Oprah Winfrey bade a tearful farewell to her groundbreaking television program on Thursday, ending 25 years of star confessions and exhortations that her legions of loyal followers "live their best lives."

In a program taped one day earlier at Oprah's Harpo Studios in Chicago, Winfrey took to the stage and, in what had become almost a mantra over a quarter-century of the talk show, urged her audience to follow their dreams.

"Each one of you has your own platform," Winfrey said in a final broadcast beamed to millions of homes across the
United States.

 "Yours is wherever you are. That is your platform, your circle of influence, your talk show," she said.

There was a single chair onstage, but the daytime-TV doyenne stood alone and center-stage for most of the hour-long broadcast.
      
 In a program featuring the highlights from previous shows, Winfrey occasionally poked fun at her past outfits and accessories. But most of her remarks focused on what she called her "journey."

 "I listened and grew," she said. "I always wanted to be a teacher and this is the world's biggest classroom."
 
Oprah Winfrey is one of a select group of celebrities who might reasonably be considered an entertainment deity in the United States.
 
She made the transition from local television show host to national syndication in 1986 as the antithesis of what
a TV talk show host was supposed to look like.

(Agencies)