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Bette Midler

Bette Midler

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Bette Midler on stage for the opening night of her new show at The Colosseum in Las Vegas. Ethan Miller/Getty Images for AEG Live/Concerts West hide caption

toggle caption Ethan Miller/Getty Images for AEG Live/Concerts West

She put a spell on us in Hocus Pocus, taught us the true meaning of friendship in Beaches, and dazzled with Lily Tomlin in Big Business.* She's The Divine Miss M, and totally fabulous.

I first discovered Bette Midler at a sleepover in elementary school. We put on a makeshift karaoke show, with hairbrushes as mics, and the kitchen table as our stage. We belted out "Wind Beneath My Wings," "The Rose," and "From a Distance," like our lives depended on it — as if, as third graders, we understood what that kind of love and pain and loss really felt like.

From The Stepford Wives to The First Wives Club, Bette seems to gravitate toward strong, complicated, and fiesty characters, which I take to be a reflection of her own personality. And now, she's set to perform 100 nights/year at the Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. Her new show is called, "The Showgirl Must Go On," and go on she does.

Today, Bette Midler joins us to take a look back on her career, and talk about her current and forthcoming projects. So, tell us — when were you first introduced to the Grammy Award-winning singer-actress-comedian? What's your favorite performance of hers to date? And what would you like to ask her about her work?

* Deep Cut, Trivia Question: Bette did the voice for which character in what doggy Disney musical?**
** Ans: Bette was the voice of Georgette in Disney's Oliver & Company.



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Bette Midler has given me (and my friends) a lifetime of joy. I waited at the stage door on the opening night of her European tour (in Seattle) and when she left the theater at 3:00 a.m. to find two 19-year-old admirers waiting gush over her performance, she was nothing short of graceful and gracious (I still have the autograph).

One question: is the biopic of Lotte Lenya ever going to happen?

Sent by David Morden | 2:51 PM | 5-22-2008

I first heard The Divine Miss M thanks to my dear friend (and hers) Harold D in Toronto... and have every album of hers.

Sent by Steve Marks | 3:10 PM | 5-22-2008

Bette is one of the first stars that i really started to listen to. The Divine Miss M's cd's were the first one's that i asked my parents for when i was 15. 19 years later, i still listen to those cd's and her music. love ya!

Sent by michael rocchins | 3:11 PM | 5-22-2008

Glad to see you re-thought your advise to your daughter... now about that comment about Gay Marriage???

Sent by Ace | 3:43 PM | 5-22-2008

I was 9 yrs. old, when The Divine Miss M album 1st came out, and Mom would play it while cleaning. I've been a die hard ever since. Mom bought the 2nd album, Bette Midler, but dropped off there, where I picked up collecting. By the time The Rose came out, she had me for life!

Sent by David Cole | 2:25 PM | 5-23-2008

What a thrill, listening to the interview, to hear my name and the 'New York Magazine' article I wrote about Bette Midler so many years ago, as being important in her career. I remember the interview was in the 'east village' and that I had no idea about what the 'baths' were.

Sent by Ruth Cobbett Biemiller | 3:32 PM | 5-23-2008

My first memory of Bette is going to see Beaches with my best friend- we were about 8 or 9. I remember getting chills when I saw her sing. From that point on, I was hooked. 20 plus years later, I'm still a BetteHead. I've seen her three times in concert and loved every second of it.

Sent by Wendy | 6:59 PM | 5-24-2008

First - what she advises her own daughter is he business. Second: she has already talked about gay marriage after the Larry King interview, if that`s what you are referring to(should be more specific if you are so concerned).

Sent by Cristy | 1:17 AM | 5-25-2008

I have been a long time fan since the release of her debut "The Divine Miss M". I saw her on her first tour at Kleinhans in Buffalo, NY and most recently her show in Vegas. It was great to see that Miss M is back, because let's face it, Disney was a bit dehydrating. Cheers Bette, hope to see you again next year.

Sent by David Mavis | 2:06 PM | 5-26-2008

I think I may have been about 12 years old when I saw the movie, The Rose, on television. I only remember bits and pieces of the movie as a whole, but I remember her performance was riveting. I followed her along the years. I enjoyed her comedic style and her music. Now that I am adult, I have watched her grow, and her music mature as well. My children were able watch her acting skills in Hocus Pocus. I am glad to see her go back to her roots, so to speak.

Sent by Angela M. Brown | 4:01 PM | 5-26-2008