Bette Midler (born December 1, 1945) is an American singer, actress and comedian, also known (by her informal stage name) as The Divine Miss M. She has starred in live-action films such as Ruthless People, Beaches and Hocus Pocus, as well as featuring in animated films such as Oliver & Company and Fantasia 2000.
During her more than forty-year career, Midler has been nominated for two Academy Awards; and won four Grammy Awards, four Golden Globes, three Emmy Awards, and a special Tony Award. She has also sold over 30 million records as an artist.
Midler was born in Honolulu, Hawaii into a Jewish family. She is the daughter of seamstress/housewife Ruth (née Schindel) and house painter Fred Midler, who worked at a Navy base in Hawaii. Her parents were from Paterson, New Jersey and moved to Honolulu before Midler was born. She was named after the actress Bette Davis, though Davis pronounced her first name in two syllables, and Midler uses one, /ˈbɛt/. She was raised in Aiea and attended Radford High School in Honolulu. She was voted "Most Talkative" in the 1961 school Hoss Election, and in her Senior Year (Class of 1963) "Most Dramatic". She majored in drama at the University of Hawaii (though she only attended for three semesters) and earned money in the film Hawaii (released in 1966) as an extra, playing a seasick passenger named Mrs David Buff in the film.