The Pink Lady

The Pink Lady

By Louise Schroader Epperson

The Pink Lady explores the life and career of Helen Gahagan Douglas, U.S. Congresswoman in the 1940s.  Before going to Congress she had been an opera singer and Broadway actress.  After marrying Melvyn Douglas and moving to Hollywood to pursue his movie career, she became involved in California politics, eventually serving as national committeewoman and two terms as a congresswoman in the U. S. House of Representatives.  In 1950 she found herself in a bitter and losing battle with Richard Nixon for a seat in the Senate.  Upon leaving Washington she followed her friend Eleanor Roosevelt into service to the United Nations.  Her final battle included breast cancer which she survived living to be 80 years old.

NOTES: This play is a series of monologues that may be performed by a single actress who changes key costume parts, or by several actresses.  The stage directions are set up for the single actress.  Playing time is about 45 minutes.

Set requirements are essentially a 10 X 12 floor space with minor props.  If done by a single actress, a table with costume pieces and other hand props is needed.  Other needs are a small stool, a large basket with mementos, and a box to receive discarded costume pieces and hand props.  For the Helen Gahagan Douglas segments, it is helpful to the audience to have a sign or a cube with the year dates on it that the actress can change as the play progresses.


Helen Gahagan Douglas at four different years of her life

Grandmother Hannah Gahagan

Madame Cehanovska


Eleanor Roosevelt