Bette Midler Calls Out Lady Gaga for Stealing Mermaid Wheelchair Routine

7:19 AM PST 07/20/2011 by Lindsay Powers
Getty Images

"I've been doing singing mermaid in a wheelchair since 1980-You can keep the meat dress and the firecracker t--s," she writes on Twitter.

Bette Midler is crying foul about a Lady Gaga routine that she says is identical to one she's been doing for decades.

Midler complained on Twitter after Gaga performed in Australia in a wheelchair dressed as a mermaid.

PHOTOS: Lady Gaga and other stars on the Grammys red carpet

"I’m not sure @ladygaga knows that I’ve performed my mermaid in a wheelchair for millions of people -- and many of them are still alive….." she wrote first on Friday.

"Dear @ladygaga if you think a mermaid in a wheelchair seems familiar-it's because it is!You can see it on youtube 24/7-with ME performing it," she added.

"Dear @ladygaga Ive been doing singing mermaid in a wheelchair since 1980-You can keep the meat dress and the firecracker tits-mermaid's mine," she Saturday.

Then on Sunday, Midler had a change of heart: @ladygaga, let's drink this over at the Emmys in September. Fabulous mermaids can coexist!

Gaga tells Access Hollywood she didn't intend to copy Midler. "I had no idea that she did that and I’m a huge Bette Midler fan," she says. "I didn’t know that she’d done [it], but I do now and I think it’s great. Obviously I feel connected to women in theater and women from the past. Maybe we’re just cut from the same cloth.”

Gaga says she wanted to dress as a mermaid, and when she realized she wouldn't be able to dance on stage at the same time, "I just stuck myself in a wheelchair."

Gaga -- who has also been accused of lifting part of her act from Madonna -- was met with criticism by fans for her wheelchair performance as well. Some even threw eggs at her, Rolling Stone reports.

Fumed Jesse Billauer, the founder of the paralysis advocacy group Life Rolls On, "I invite Lady Gaga to learn more about the 5.6 million Americans who live with paralysis. They, like me, unfortunately, don’t use a wheelchair for shock value."

comments powered by Disqus