The 70-minute special, Midler's first on the network since 1997, debuts at 9 PM ET Dec. 31.
Taped before a packed house at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, Midler's fifth HBO special, according to press notes, "features some of Midler's colorful characters and her entourage of talented performers, including the staggering Harlettes, her dazzling dancers, The Caesar Salad Girls, and a 13-piece band, which includes a six-person horn section from the Las Vegas band The Fat City Horns." Expect to hear Midler's renditions of "The Rose," "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy," "From a Distance," "Hello in There" and "Wind Beneath My Wings."
"The Showgirl Must Go On" was produced by Midler and Seanne Farmer; directed by Midler; executive produced by Midler; with original stage production conceived and directed by Midler.
Bette Midler made her Broadway debut as Tzeitel in the original Broadway production of Fiddler on the Roof. She returned to the Great White Way in several concerts: Bette Midler, Bette Midler's Clams on the Half Shell Revue and Bette! Divine Madness. She was awarded a Special Tony Award in 1974 for "adding luster to the Broadway season." Midler's screen credits are extensive and include Oscar nominations for her performances in "For the Boys" and "The Rose." She is also the recipient of Grammy Awards for Record of the Year ("Wind Beneath My Wings," 1989), Best Pop Vocal Performance Female ("The Rose," 1980) and Best New Artist (1973).
Midler is also one of the producers of the Broadway-bound musical Priscilla Queen of the Desert.