BetteBack October 5, 1971: Bette Midler Plays Downstairs at Upstairs Club

Uniontown Morning Herald
October 5, 1971


At Downstairs at Upstairs, we heard a fine young comedienne-singer, Bette Midler, who has scored on the Carson, Frost, Griffin and Mike Douglas shows.

Born in New Jersey, her family moved to Hawaii where she worked on the assembly line of a pineapple canning factory.

Returning to New York, she worked as a typist at Columbia U, sold gloves at Stern’s and played in little Jewish revues in the Catskills. For three years, she was Tzeitel in “Fiddler on the Roof” and then replaced Marta Heflin in the rock musical “Salvation.”

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4 thoughts on “BetteBack October 5, 1971: Bette Midler Plays Downstairs at Upstairs Club

  1. Saw Bette Midler at Upstairs at the Downstairs in the early 70’s In Manhattan… Barry m played the piano while she sang … They were both just starting out in their fabulous careers… I have never forgot the night I’m now in my 80’s
    I enjoyed them both so much ..

    1. I was there too! My friend and I drove from Normal, Illinois to see HER. We sat at the picnic benches, drinking Singapore Slings while waiting for her to come out, my friend Greg told me he was going to go back to tell her we came all the way from Normal, Illinois to see HER. About 20 minutes later, when Greg came back, he told me he talked to HER, and to “Just wait”.
      We sat SO close to where she performed, Barry was to the left. I didn’t believe my friend that he talked to HER because she did not even acknowledge him with a nod. THEN, she paused after her high energy amazing swirling of her Tassels…. SHE beamed at US, stating “Here’s to my dear friend Greg and his friend Peg who came all the way from Normal, Illinois to see ME!” She launched into, “Well you gotta have FRIENDS”. I nearly died, laughing, slapping silly Greg’s right arm while she GLOWED at us through out that song!!!!!
      Afterwards, leaving the club, on the street, other clubbers gave Greg and I an impromptu clapping ovation while we laughed laughs that still resound.

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