Angela Baddeley

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Angela Baddeley
Angela Baddeley.jpg
Angela Baddeley, 1938
Born Madeleine Angela Clinton-Baddeley
(1904-07-04)4 July 1904
London, England, UK
Died 22 February 1976(1976-02-22) (aged 71)
Wargrave, Berkshire, England, UK
Occupation Actress

Angela Baddeley, CBE (4 July 1904 – 22 February 1976) was an English stage and television actress, best-remembered for her role as "Mrs. Bridges" in the period drama Upstairs, Downstairs. Her stage career lasted more than six decades.

Early life[edit]

Born as Madeleine Angela Clinton-Baddeley in London in 1904 into a wealthy family, she would later base the character of Mrs. Bridges on one of the cooks her family employed.[1] Her younger sister was actress Hermione Baddeley (1906–1986).

In 1912, aged 8, Angela made her stage début at the Dalston Palace in London in a play called The Dawn of Happiness.[1] When she was nine, she auditioned at the Old Vic Theatre. In November 1915 she made her stage début at the Old Vic in Richard III, and she subsequently appeared in many other Shakespeare plays.[1]

During her teenage years, the "consummate little actress", as a national paper had once called her when she was 10, starred in many musicals and pantomimes.[1] She briefly 'retired' from acting at age 18. Her first marriage, to Stephen Thomas, produced one daughter. On 8 July 1929[2] she married actor/stage director Glen Byam Shaw; they had two children, a son and a daughter.[1]

In 1938, she appeared in King Vidor's film, The Citadel, an adaptation of A. J. Cronin's novel. After spending some time touring in Australia, Baddeley established herself as a popular stage actress. In 1931, she appeared in two films, the Sherlock Holmes tale, The Speckled Band, featuring Raymond Massey as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's sleuth, and in The Ghost Train, a large screen version of the hit stage thriller. Throughout the 1940s, she played many strong female roles on stage, including Miss Prue in 'Love for Love' and Nora in The Winslow Boy.

Later years[edit]

She played the bawd in Tony Richardson's production of Pericles, Prince of Tyre at the Shakespeare Memorial Theatre in 1958. She was made a CBE in 1975 for "services to the theatre".[1] She died in Wargrave, Berkshire in 1976 from pneumonia at age 71, shortly after Upstairs, Downstairs ended its original run. She is interred, along with her husband Glen Byam Shaw, at St Mary's Church, Wargrave, Berkshire.

Family[edit]

She was the grandmother of Charles Hart, lyricist of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, The Phantom of the Opera.

Selected filmography[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f "The Best of Upstairs, Downstairs". TV Times. 1976. 
  2. ^ Sassoon, Siegfried (1929). Journal MS Add.9852/1/29. Cambridge University Library Manuscripts Department: archive material. pp. 137 verso. 

External links[edit]