Celebrating 100 Years of Oakland Technical High School
Jane Adams Stephens ’30
According to Jane Stephens’ elderly son George, Stephens was an artist and once drew a funny picture of one of her Tech teachers as if she were really fat. Needless to say, the teacher was not pleased and Jane remembered the moment all her life! After graduating from Tech, Stephens sought her fortune in Los Angeles where she got a job as a dancer with Fanchon and Marco Dance Company which produced lavish productions for the LA’s Paramount Theater.
In the late 20s and 30s, a ticket to a movie also got you a newsreel, cartoon, short subject, feature film, and a live and often very elaborate stage show. The most famous of the Fanchon and Marco acts was the “Fanchonettes,” a group of 48 young women dancers similar to the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall in New York. Various groups of Fanchon & Marco girls, known also as the “Sunkist Beauties,” would perform in theaters up and down the West Coast. Stephens toured with the group for several years.
When her dancing career ended, Stephens moved back to the Bay Area and put her artistic talents to work as a design draftsman at PG&E. She had 2 sons, 9 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren, and 5 great-great grandchildren and died at age 94 in 2007.