Playwrights on Park

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Hill-Stead Museum and Playhouse on Park present a reading of Althea and Angela a play by Todd Olson

Playhouse Theater Group, Inc presents a reading of the play Althea and Angela by Todd Olson in conjunction with the Playwrights on Park play reading series through Playhouse on ...Park. This event was held at the Hill-Stead Museum as part of the From the Porch Summer Series on July 12, 2020. Actors and guests attending sat physically distanced in pods outlined on the lawn.


Althea and Angela contains racial slurs and derogatory comments that although historically accurate, can be uncomfortable for audiences to hear, but were deemed essential for the full understanding of the world of the play.

In 1955 Althea Gibson and Angela Buxton were world-ranked tennis players...yet no one wanted to partner with them in women’s doubles. In fact, few even wanted to talk with them. Post-War America was still very segregated and the tennis world was still very anti-Semitic. Eight years after Jackie Robinson had broken the color line in major league baseball, the tennis world lagged behind, clinging to its country club roots. So, Althea, a black woman from Harlem, and Angela, a Jewish woman from Liverpool, were outcasts in two nations. So they decided to join forces outside their own country - and what happened then made history.

ALTHEA & ANGELA tells the story of their meeting at an exhibition game in New Delhi, pairing up, and winning the French Open and Wimbledon – the first Grand Slam events that any African-American - male or female - had ever accomplished. It also tells the story of the unlikely events that occurred 40 years later, when one fell upon destitute times...and the other saved her life by a mass appeal to the tennis world.
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