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Bette Midler Defies Play-Off Music in Tony Acceptance Speech 

Bette Midler Defies Play-Off Music in Tony Acceptance Speech

Bette Midler, Tony Awards
Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

“Shut that crap off!"

A note to future awards shows that want to play Bette Midler off during an acceptance speech: don't try it.

After winning the award for best actress in a musical for her performance in the revival of Hello, Dolly!, Midler launched into a gracious speech attempting to thank seemingly everyone involved in the production.

"I'd like to thank the American Theater Wing to begin with, and all the Tony voters," she said, "many of whom I've dated."

Related | Audience Member Faints At Bette Midler's Hello, Dolly! Would 'Rather Die Than Miss Act 2'

"This has been one of the greatest professional experiences of my entire life. I'm so grateful for the outpouring of love and affection that have greeted me and this production," she continued. "That saying, I can't remember the last time I've had so much smoke blown up my ass, but there is no more room."

About two and a half minutes into her speech, the orchestra attempted to play Midler offstage. Surprising no one, Midler kept doling out thanks, even waving her hand with an annoyed "shut that crap off" at one point. "This is a classic, come and see it," she said, "this thing has the ability to lift your spirits in these terrible, terrible times." Watch Midler's speech and play-off dodge, below.

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Dennis Hinzmann