In 1980, the head usher at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium gives his crew a pep talk: he wants tonight's "Betty Midler" show to go smoothly. He's a little worried about risque language, ... See full summary »
In 1980, the head usher at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium gives his crew a pep talk: he wants tonight's "Betty Midler" show to go smoothly. He's a little worried about risque language, Liberace recently gave him a scare. Then, boom, there she is, with her backup trio, "The Harlettes," going from rock to ballad to medley, from "Big Noise From Winnetka" to "I Shall Be Released." It's a concentration of camp: she imitates Sophie Tucker, she's mermaid Dolores Delago, and between every song, it's non-stop movement and lots of raunchy patter. Written by
Yes I was a very naughty girl to watch this at age 12 - but come on, it was on network television where I lived and starting at 10 pm...
I fell in love with her here. Her comedy flare, her emotional rendering of some songs, her sheer mad-rock ones of others. It made me want to see "The Rose" (which I did) sing "Shiver Me Timbers" all day long and expect ever grander things from her Live (which eventually I got). She seems to exude so much emotion one minute, then so much raunchy humor the other. I just loved the fact that the concert/performance was introduced the way it was. And her hairdo has never quite been the same again, has it? Though myself, ultimate 80s girl-fashion victim went to the altar of sacrifice in that respect, too - just because on top of everything she did so damned well, she just looked so gorgeous.
Perfect intro to her many talents!
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