Tag Archives: Ethel Merman

Thursday, January 10, 2019

BetteBack August 19, 1975: Bette Midler Says Lawrence Welk Dissed Her

Wichita Falls Times
August 19, 1975


Bette Midler said in Playgirl magazine that Lawrence Welk was once supposed to dance with her on the Mike Douglas show, but he wouldn’t – he thought I was a dirty little girl” . . . Pearl Bailey’s daughter, Dee, 16, is traveling with Pearl’s “Hello, Dolly!” company, so Bill Daniel’s daughter Dominique, 16, came along to keep her company.

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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Betty Buckley-Led HELLO, DOLLY! Tour Will Makes Stops in LA, Chicago & More; Full Itinerary Announced

Broadway World
Betty Buckley-Led HELLO, DOLLY! Tour Will Makes Stops in LA, Chicago & More; Full Itinerary Announced
by BWW News Desk Jul. 16, 2018

Betty Buckely

As BroadwayWorld previously reported, the Tony Award-winning Broadway legend Betty Buckley will star in the first national tour of Hello, Dolly!, the Tony Award-winning Best Musical Revival, beginning September 30, 2018 in the Connor Palace at Cleveland’s Playhouse Square. The full tour itinerary is as follows:

Cleveland, OH USA
Sept 30 – Oct 21
Connor Palace

Chicago, IL USA
Oct 23 – Nov 17
Oriental Theatre

Miami, FL USA
Nov 20 – Nov 25
Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County

Orlando, FL USA
Nov 27 – Dec 2
Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts

Tampa, FL USA
Dec 4 – Dec 9
David A. Straz, Jr. Center for the Performing Arts

West Palm Beach, FL USA
Dec 11 – Dec 16
Raymond F. Kravis Center For The Performing Arts

Tempe, AZ USA
Jan 8, 2019 – Jan 13, 2019
ASU Gammage

San Diego, CA USA
Jan 15, 2019 – Jan 20, 2019
San Diego Civic Theatre

Costa Mesa, CA USA
Jan 22, 2019 – Jan 27, 2019
Segerstrom Center for the Arts

Los Angeles, CA USA
Jan 29, 2019 – Feb 17, 2019
Pantages Theatre – Los Angeles

San Francisco, CA USA
Feb 19, 2019 – Mar 17, 2019
Golden Gate Theatre

Las Vegas, NV USA
Mar 19, 2019 – Mar 24, 2019
The Smith Center

Denver, CO USA
Mar 27, 2019 – Apr 7, 2019
Buell Theatre

Des Moines, IA USA
Apr 9, 2019 – Apr 14, 2019
Des Moines Civic Center

Minneapolis, MN USA
Apr 16, 2019 – Apr 28, 2019
Orpheum Theatre – Minneapolis

Nashville, TN USA
Apr 30, 2019 – May 5, 2019
Andrew Jackson Hall At Tennessee Performing Arts Center

Columbus, OH USA
May 7, 2019 – May 12, 2019
Ohio Theatre

Louisville, KY USA
May 14, 2019 – May 19, 2019
Kentucky Center For The Performing Arts

Durham, NC USA
May 21, 2019 – May 26, 2019
Durham Performing Arts Center

Greenville, SC USA
May 28, 2019 – Jun 2, 2019
Peace Center For The Performing Arts

Washington, DC USA
Jun 4, 2019 – Jul 7, 2019
Opera House (DC)

Charlotte, NC USA
Jul 9, 2019 – Jul 14, 2019
Belk Theater

Dallas, TX USA
Jul 17, 2019 – Jul 28, 2019
Music Hall At Fair Park

Boston, MA USA
Aug 6, 2019 – Aug 18, 2019
Opera House (MA)

Ms. Buckley, dubbed “The Voice of Broadway,” joins the astonishing list of show business luminaries who have inhabited the role, including Carol Channing, Pearl Bailey, Phyllis Diller, Betty Grable, Martha Raye, Ginger Rogers, Ethel Merman, in her last appearance on Broadway, Mary Martin, who led the West End company, and most recently in this celebrated new production, Bette Midler, Donna Murphy, and Bernadette Peters.

Led by four-time Tony Award-winning director Jerry Zaks and choreographed by Tony Award winner Warren Carlyle, the entire creative team of the Broadway production will reprise their roles for the national tour of Hello, Dolly!, including four-time Tony Award winner Santo Loquasto (Scenic & Costume Design), six-time Tony Award winner Natasha Katz (Lighting Design), Tony Award winner Scott Lehrer (Sound Design), Andy Einhorn (Music Direction), Tony Award winner Larry Hochman (Orchestrations), Tony Award winner Don Pippin (Vocal Arrangements), David Chase (Dance Arrangements), and Telsey + Company (Casting).

This Hello, Dolly!, the first new production of the classic musical (based on Thornton Wilder’s The Matchmaker) to appear on Broadway since it opened more than fifty years ago, pays tribute to the work of its original director/choreographer Gower Champion, which has been hailed both then and now as one of the greatest stagings in musical theater history.

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Friday, February 23, 2018

Bette Midler vs Bernadette Peters With The Critics: In The End It Just Boils Down To Personal Preference – Stop Comparing!

Mister D: I know some of you don’t want to see any comparison reviews because it pits two beloved stars and friends against one another, but you knew it was going to happen. So I picked out some that said the same thing as the others, and what it really boils down to is personal tastes and fandom. The Peter’s fans are going to pick her and the Midler fans will pick Midler. Midler will win of course because she is an international star where Bernadette is basically a favorite of the Broadway crowd. It’s just a fact. So I see no reason to even argue with one another. Neither side is going to listen. And don’t feel sorry for these ladies. They are both at the top of their game, they have made it in an industry that is callous and cruel. Believe me both women can handle what is thrown at them. Yes, I’m sure they still get hurt feelings, but by now they have learned to say “fuck it, I’m a star!!!”

Daily Beast
Bette Midler Is a Better ‘Dolly’ Than Bernadette Peters: Review of ‘Hello, Dolly!’

As Bernadette Peters officially opens in ‘Hello, Dolly!,’ the question is, who played it best: Peters or predecessor Bette Midler? Our critic prepares to have his gay card revoked.

Tim Teeman
02.22.18 7:30 PM ET

It’s a gay Sophie’s Choice, and it’s happening on Broadway right now.

Prepare for friendships to be torn asunder, loud street arguments in Hell’s Kitchen (“At least Bernadette Peters knows how to walk down a staircase”), and vodka sodas being flung in anger.

Are you ‘Bette’ or ‘Bernadette’? (Or, kind, warm soul, do you love them both equally? They are both different performers, and shouldn’t be compared etc.)

Sadly, if you saw Midler and are also seeing Peters, comparisons are inevitable. On Thursday night, Peters officially takes over the mantle–or giant, deep pink, feathery fascinator—of Dolly Gallagher Levi from Midler, in Jerry Zaks’ handsomely mounted Broadway production of Hello, Dolly!

The Midler production of Jerry Herman’s musical (with book by Michael Stewart) which opened last April was, as I wrote at the time, a barnstorming, all-cylinders-rocketing joy, for which Midler won a Tony. It would be tough for any actor to follow her.

Peters obviously has the stage stature, but she is a very different Dolly. Midler exuded a flirty, knowing, audience-winking warmth in her Dolly. Peters, the night this reviewer attended at least, seemed more distant and (even if this means my gay card being immediately revoked) more nervous and tentative in the role.

Some in the audience would disagree with this—loudly. They whooped and applauded Peters as they had with Midler. Your preference, if you see both actors in the role, will come down to personal taste. Peters’ first appearance in Act One still brings the show to a hollering halt in its infancy. For Broadway devotees, Peters equals, even outstrips Midler in the icon stakes.

But in this role, Peters’ Dolly feels more skittish and scattered, and less focused than Midler’s eccentric mistress of all that she surveys and seeks to benevolently manipulate. We do not, for a moment, believe that Peters’ Dolly has a crush on, and desires to have a relationship with, Victor Garber’s Horace Vandergelder, the gruff Yonkers store-owner.

Both performers have no chemistry whatsoever, and do not even attempt to magic some up. Peters’ Dolly seems a little too outside the universe of the musical around her, and Garber’s performance compares poorly to David Hyde Pierce’s engaging incarnation—he was both a match and foil for Midler—in the earlier production.

Hyde Pierce captured Vandergelder as a grouchy eccentric, whose perfect mugging when singing “Penny In My Pocket” burrowed into the song’s ridiculous schematics. Garber singing the same looks puzzled, and makes us feel puzzled watching him.

Garber’s Vandergelder is more loopy eccentric—he reminded me of Charlie Bucket’s Grandpa from Charlie and The Chocolate Factory—than scowling, world-rejecting widower awaiting reawakening. His first song, “It Takes a Woman,” sung with the men of the company about women’s roles in domestic patriarchy, suddenly sounds creepily sexist rather than just charmingly hokey as it did before.

In evoking Dolly’s own widowhood, and her occasional soliloquies to her dear departed Ephraim, Peters locates some scratchily profound emotional notes that Midler did not, and this seemed to me to reflect her Dolly as less assured and less commanding. Others may think it is simply a more restrained performance, and good on her, but is Dolly Levi best played as restrained?

There is no sense why Peters’ Dolly and Garber’s Horace would get together, and no sense of them operating together when sharing a stage. Everything is said and played by both actors directly to us rather than between them. At the end, their coupling is purely ceremonial.

‘Dolly’ fans will not be disappointed by the key scene of our diva descending the Harmonia Gardens restaurant stairs, and the show’s title number striking up. The visuals of Dolly in her deep pink dress and crowning fascinator and the queenly acceptance of the waiters’ “Hello, Dolly, it’s so nice to have you back where you belong,” are as richly sung and visually satisfying as ever. (This is even more impressive when you consider that the ‘waiters’ have, for the previous few minutes, been performing the demented “Waiters’ Gallop,” choreographed by Warren Carlyle, with wobbling mountains of plates.)

Just as memorable as Peters’ Dolly, center stage and sparkling right in front of us, are the men’s wonderful voices, singing their devotion to Dolly in perfect unison.

Midler offset this goosebump-raising, bracing men’s chorus with her own perfectly judged campy theatrics and soft, lilting voice; Peters’ Dolly seems a little overwhelmed by the attention and unsure of who’s who. In its Midler iteration, the show was a smooth, big-voiced, big-colored joy; now it feels workmanlike. It is not terrible, but you can see the joins and hear a little creaking.

If this sounds harsh, there are other joys left intact. Peters, like Midler, makes the best kind of meal out of eating a meal. The orchestra, led by conductor Justin Hornback, is so lushly controlled you dream that one day you could march down a New York street with them playing “Before The Parade Passes By” beside you.

The chorus is glorious, from their first collective sortie singing “Put On Your Sunday Clothes,” dressed in Santo Loquasto’s suits and dresses in maxed-up sherbet colors, through to the men’s dazzling serenade of Dolly herself.

Remaining from the original are the formidable presences of Kate Baldwin as hat-shop owner Irene Molloy, who is not only very funny but whose honeyed meticulousness when singing “Ribbons Down My Back” underscores so perfectly the longing of that song.

Like her, a stay-on from the Midler production, Gavin Creel (now out of the show, recovering from back surgery; Santino Fontana will replace him) provides strong and charming support as store clerk Cornelius Hackl. Charlie Stemp as his sidekick Barnaby is appositely goofy, and as delightfully light on his feet as he needs to be as the pair search New York’s streets for a woman to kiss.

Molly Griggs as Minnie Fay, Irene’s assistant, is a zingily hilarious scene-stealer, and—some things never change—the worst parts are for young lovers Ambrose Kemper (Will Burton) and Ermengarde (Melanie Moore), whose desired union is the impetus for the musical’s plot and who are soon forgotten, reappearing only occasionally for her to wail in misery.

Peters fans will not be disappointed (their devotion would mean that would take a lot anyway). Hello, Dolly! is still a pleasure to watch. You will hum the songs for days. If you didn’t see Midler, Peters won’t suffer by comparison. If you did see Midler, it will come down to taste. Peters doesn’t perform the role badly, but, for this critic at least, the sense of fun and mischief that should orbit Dolly is missing from her. It was the heady perfume of the 2017 Midler production.

Suddenly, Hello, Dolly! feels like a company of individual performers working hard, rather than a company of performers in smooth, collective command of the material. Before the parade passes by, Hello, Dolly! would benefit from a reset.

Hello, Dolly! is at the Schubert Theatre, 225 West 44th Street, NYC. Booking through July 30.

The Hollywood Reporter
‘Hello, Dolly!’: Theater Review
2/22/2018 by Frank Scheck

You experience many things while watching the Broadway revival of Hello, Dolly! at the Sam S. Shubert Theatre. Laughter at the broad, hysterical comedy. Joy upon hearing Jerry Herman’s gorgeous score. Wonderment at the eye-popping costumes on constant display. But now that Bernadette Peters has taken over the title role, for the first time you’ll also shed tears.

That’s because the veteran, two-time Tony Award-winning performer has brought a poignancy to the production that wasn’t quite in evidence with her predecessor, Bette Midler. Midler was a powerhouse presence to be sure, bringing to the part all of her star wattage and formidable comic chops. Her starring turn, which resulted in sell-out performances and huge box-office grosses, became instantly iconic. But you never felt as much concern and tenderness toward her Dolly as you do for this one.

Peters, of course, is no slouch when it comes to being an iconic presence herself, considering that her career as a theater star has lasted a half-century since her breakout performances in 1968’s George M! and off-Broadway’s Dames at Sea. Since then she’s delivered acclaimed turns in such musicals as On the Town, Mack & Mabel, Sunday in the Park with George, Song and Dance, Into the Woods, Annie Get Your Gun, A Little Night Music and Follies. If anyone could be considered musical theater royalty, it’s her.

She pulls off another triumph here, infusing her Dolly Gallagher Levi with a pathos that, while making the character less a force of nature, makes her far more relatable. When her Dolly speaks to her dead husband Ephraim, such as when she implores him to let her go so she can get on with her life and be happy, it’s not just a prelude to the big, first-act closing number “Before the Parade Passes By” but also a tearful plea from the heart.

Which is not to say that she falls short of the role’s comedic demands. Her performance is less vivacious than Midler’s, but no less hilarious. With her deadpan comic line readings and subtle bits of physical business — the latter especially shown off in the riotously farcical hat shop scene in which she does not just a double, but a triple, take — she gets all the necessary laughs and more without lapsing into excessive shtick. Her vocals are equally stellar, and she looks sensational slinking down those Harmonia Gardens Restaurant stairs in that fabulous red dress and feathered headdress.

Victor Garber, another Broadway veteran whose musical theater credits include Sweeney Todd and Damn Yankees, has taken over for David Hyde Pierce as Dolly’s comic foil Horace Vandergelder. Garber doesn’t get nearly as many laughs as his predecessor, but few actors could, since Hyde Pierce is a finely tuned comedy machine. But if Garber’s more restrained performance is less gut-busting, it’s also less of a caricature. His Horace is more emotionally vulnerable, making us care more deeply about him and Dolly getting together.

The other significant cast changes (Gavin Creel and Kate Baldwin continue in their Tony winning and nominated roles respectively, and have only gotten better with time) are Charlie Stemp as Barnaby Tucker and Molly Griggs as Minnie Fay. Stemp, a 24-year-old British actor who won raves for his London performances in Half a Sixpence and Dick Whittington and here makes his Broadway debut, is a revelation. Effortlessly charming and displaying pitch-perfect comic timing, the charismatic performer is also one hell of a dancer. So much so, in fact, that he’s been given a dazzling solo in the “Dancing” number that wasn’t there before. Catch him now, and you’ll be able to say that you saw a star in the making. Griggs, who’s replaced Beanie Feldstein, proves no less an adorable laugh-getter than her predecessor and has excellent chemistry with Stemp. You’ll be seeing a lot more of her in the future as well.

Jerry Zaks’ perfectly tooled staging hasn’t lost a step, dancing or otherwise, since the show opened 10 months ago. Gower Champion’s original 1964 Broadway production — starring Carol Channing followed by a host of luminaries including Ginger Rogers, Martha Raye, Betty Grable, Pearl Bailey, Phyllis Diller and Ethel Merman — played 2,844 performances. Assuming that it can keep up this level of star casting, there’s no reason not to think that this revival can’t match it.

‘‘Hello, Dolly!’ review: Well, hello, Bernadette Peters!
By Barbara Schuler
Updated February 22, 2018 9:00 PM

It’s been just a month since the “Hello, Dolly!” hats (and magnificent hats, they are) were passed from the Tony-winning, seriously adored Bette Midler to Broadway legend Bernadette Peters.

Time to invite the critics, who for the most part will be inclined to compare the two performances. But you won’t get that here. For a variety of reasons, I never saw Midler in the role. We’re starting fresh.

“Bette, who?” is all I have to say. Peters electrifies the Shubert Theatre stage with her warm, finely nuanced take on matchmaker Dolly Gallagher Levi, the multitasking widow who decides to rejoin the human race, with a perfect mix of heartfelt vocals and impeccable comic timing. True, her voice is on the raspy side (she is playing eight shows a week, where Midler got most Tuesday nights off with Donna Murphy stepping in) but it takes nothing away from the many magical moments — among them the renowned title song, of course, but also the life-affirming “Before the Parade Passes By” — that this lavish confection offers up. And never have I seen an audience so primed to love a show, with the applause starting the minute the lights went down and crescendoing at Dolly’s famed strut down the Harmonia Gardens staircase.

Some of that applause was saved for Victor Garber, another newcomer to the production, replacing David Hyde Pierce as the penny-pinching half-a-millionaire Horace Vandergelder, the man Dolly has her sights on. Lacking the musical chops of Peters (or the rest of the cast for that matter), Garber, all rumpled hair and grating New York accent, sells his wonderful material, especially the song “Penny in My Pocket” that’s often cut from the show, with a heavy dose of curmudgeonly charm.

A word, too, for Charlie Stemp as Barnaby Tucker, taking over for Taylor Trensch, now breaking hearts over at “Dear Evan Hansen.” A wonderful dancer, Stemp is delightful as the befuddled sidekick to Gavin Creel’s Tony-winning Cornelius Hackl.

Broadway statistics have noted a marked revenue drop following Midler’s departure, attributed both to the stratospheric prices she was commanding and the typical post-holiday slump. But this production has good bones — Santo Loquasto’s gorgeous costumes and artistic scenery and Jerry Herman’s well-loved score. When the time comes, a way off we hope, for Peters to move on, director Jerry Zaks will surely find another Dolly (one survey says fans want to see Dolly Parton in the part), and in all likelihood, my next question will be, “Bernadette, who?”

The New York Times
Review: The ‘Dolly’ Parade Marches On, Now With a New Star
HELLO, DOLLY! NYT Critic’s Pick Broadway, Musical, Musical 2 hrs. and 35 min. Open Run Shubert Theater, 225 W. 44th St. 212-239-6200
By JESSE GREENFEB. 22, 2018 Read More

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Wednesday, January 17, 2018


Official Press Release




Bette Midler’s critically acclaimed and award-winning run in Hello, Dolly! came to a triumphant close on Sunday with a staggering reported gross of $2,436,207.84 over seven regular performances at the Shubert Theatre (225 West 44th Street). In addition, the eighth performance of the week and the final one of Ms. Midler’s run was a special benefit for The Actors Fund, raising an astonishing $598,203.

Over the eight performances, the show grossed a total of $3,034,410.84.

Starting Saturday evening, January 20, two-time Tony Award winner Bernadette Peters, capping a 60-years-long career of triumph after triumph as “the most accomplished musical comedy star of her generation” (The Washington Post), will take on the title role in the most successful and beloved Broadway production of the year: Hello, Dolly!, winner of the Tony Award® for Best Revival of a Musical. Ms. Peters joins the astonishing list of Broadway and Hollywood luminaries who have inhabited the role, which, in addition to Ms. Midler, includes Carol Channing, Pearl Bailey, Phyllis Diller, Betty Grable, Martha Raye, Ginger Rogers, Ethel Merman, in her last appearance on Broadway, and Mary Martin, who led the West End company.

Joining Ms. Peters on January 20, will be four-time Tony Award nominee and six-time Emmy Award nominee Victor Garber as Horace Vendergelder, Olivier Award nominee Charlie Stemp making his Broadway debut in the role of Barnaby Tucker, and Molly Griggs as Minnie Fay.


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Sunday, January 14, 2018

Hello Dolly! But for now, to wrap up 2017, Bette Midler got the last word: boffo.

Showbiz 411
Seeing Bette Midler for $229 a Pop As She Finishes Her Run in “Hello, Bette”–er, “Hello, Dolly!”
by Roger Friedman – December 30, 2017 10:25 pm

Bette Midler is winding up her run on Broadway as Dolly Levi in Hello Dolly!– or Dolly Levi as Bette Midler in Hello, Bette– so I finally coughed up the $229 and saw her on Friday night at the Shubert Theater. You know, she wows the crowd, getting a standing ovation in the second act for pulling off the famous theme number (parodied years later by Mel Brooks as “Springtime for Hitler”). Her voice is top notch, she’s smiling from ear to ear and giving it all she’s got– which is plenty at age 72, the oldest performer to play Dolly on Broadway.

Bette’s run looked like a cash grab from day one. She’s making about $100,000 a week or more as the show has grossed an average of $2.4 million weekly– except when she’s not there. Midler’s had not a few ten day vacations through her season. But there she is, Bette Midler, large as life, probably in her final big run on Broadway and the only time she’s been in a proper musical. (“Clams on the Half Shell” doesn’t count.)

She’s splendiferous in the costumes, and knows when to chew scenes a la Carol Channing, Pearl Bailey, Ethel Merman. In the second act she can kibbitz and carry on just enough to make it look ad-libbed, but it’s clear she’s having some fun at least. And again, the voice– the voice was in rare form on Friday night, none of the hoarseness I’d heard about. Dolly has to shoulder some big numbers– “Put on Your Sunday Clothes,” “Before the Parade Passes By” and the big title sequence. To her credit, Bette not only survived those but knocked out a home run on her final number, a total solo called “So Long, Dearie.” She actually seemed to relish the solo.

The whole cast is top notch, especially Gavin Creel (from “Hair”) as the 33 year old virgin Cornelius, and the sensational Kate Baldwin as Irene Molloy, the young widow who gets with the program fast. Luckily, I think those two are sticking around when Midler is succeeded by Bernadette Peters in late January. David Hyde Pierce is a little miscast as Horace Vandergelder, but he pulls off the role with aplomb. The producers added a cut number from the original production to give DHP’s Horace some more substance– and it works.

Still, as a “Hello, Dolly!” expert (we saw it a lot as children and young adults), I kept getting the feeling that we were seeing “Hello, Bette!” Midler wasn’t convincing conveying Dolly’s grief for her dead husband, or Dolly’s sensible acknowledgment that it was time to move on. I do think Bernadette Peters is going to bring Carol Channing’s sensibility and maybe a little gravity to the role– she is no less a superstar. But for now, to wrap up 2017, Bette Midler got the last word: boffo.

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Monday, April 10, 2017

BetteBack September 4, 1974: Bette Midler Makes Number One On Worst Dressed List

Appleton Post Crescent
September 4, 1974


Singer Bette Midler is No. 1 on Mr. Blackwell‘s list of the 10 worst dressed women of 1973. No. 10 is a man: rock music star David Bowie.

For only the second time in 14 years of issuing the list, Blackwell included a man.

The designer explained, “If they want to face the public as a woman, they deserve to make the list.” He described Bowie as “a cross between Joan Crawford and Marlene Deitrich doing a glitter revival of ‘New Faces’.”

The other man who made the list in another decade is comedian Milton Berle. Berle dressed as a woman on his weekly television show to earn that title.

The 1973 list also includes such persons as Britain‘s Princess Anne and Jacqueline Onassis.

Blackwell, saving his most cutting remarks for Miss Midler, told a news conference in the drawing room of his mansion Thursday, “She looks like she took pot luck in a laundromat.

“Unlike Phyllis Diller, who worked at being bad, Bette Midler loves her scene,” said Blackwell. “She is really taking it seriously. She has put the worst of nostalgia together. Nothing really looks right on her.

“I don’t know where she got that push-up bra,” he added. “That went out years ago.” He said he judged her personal wardrobe rather than her stage costumes.

The worst dressed, named by Blackwell in order of ranking from one to 10, were: Miss Midler, Princess Anne, actress Racquet Welch, tennis star Billie Jean King, Mrs. Onassis, actresses Elke Sommer and Sarah Miles, the Andrews Sisters, actress Liv Ullman and Bowie.

The designer criticized Mrs. Onassis for her casual wardrobe. “I’d like to see her in a dress. I’m tired of $5,000 worth of T-shirts,” he chided.

He called Princess Anne’s wedding dress dull and declared she “makes her mother, the Queen, look fashionable, and that takes some doing.”

Miss Welch, who was No. 1 on the worst dressed list last year, dropped to No. 3, but not because Blackwell likes her taste any better. “She looks worse, but she’s become less important,” he said.

To dillute the sour taste of his worst dressed awards, Blackwell added a list of ladies who deserve plaudits for being “fashion Independents.” In this category he chose: Liza Minnelli, Rose Kennedy, Ann-Margret, Princess Caroline of Monaco, models-actresses Paula Tate and Marisa Berenson, Mrs. Henry Ford II and Mrs. Fred Hayman, the wife of a Beverly Hills store owner.

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Saturday, April 8, 2017

BetteBack September 3, 1974: Bette Midler Thinks Autographing Is Corny

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Tuesday, December 6, 2016

BetteBack May 1, 1973: Bette Midler Receives The Ruby Award

Syracuse Post Standard
May 1, 1973

Bette Midler during After Dark Annual Ruby Awards at Casino Russe, Delmonaco Hotel in New York City, New York, United States. (Photo by Ron Galella/WireImage)

At the Casino Russe, Bette Midler was honored by After Dark magazine with its Ruby Award. When she was introduced to Ethel Merman, Miss Midler said, “Mama, this is fabulous. Pm so thrilled to meet you. I can’t believe it.” Miss Merman stood throughout their conversation and the awardee apologized: “I only came by to say hello — not to tire you out” . . .

After the received her award, Bette Midler sighed: “The success I have now might end tomorrow. I must be prepared with something else should that time come.”

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Monday, October 3, 2016

Bette Midler On Gypsy:

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Friday, September 30, 2016

Bette Midler On Playing Gypsy Her Way:

Bette Midler On Playing Gypsy Her Way: “I always thought Ethel was funny. I thought I was doing a musical comedy. Then it turned out I was really in a drama with music. But by that time it was too late. “But I brought a lot of rage to the back end of it because I understand all that stuff, too, all that rejection, and I wanted that stuff to be very powerful — even electrifying.” (1993)

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