“In this one-woman production of First Lady Lou, Jane Fellows has brought to life a national figure who has been relegated to the shadows of history. Fellows' nuanced performance highlights Lou Henry Hoover's remarkable intelligence, generosity, and independent spirit. Spending an evening at First Lady Lou is to spend it with one of America's most admirable First Ladies.”
-- Sarah Baker Munro, former Director, Hoover-Minthorn House Museum, Newberg, Oregon
“Learning about Lou Henry Hoover was an eye-opening experience for me. As a woman born in the late 1800’s, she was anything but typical of her times. She was a woman of many and surprising talents, with a high sense of integrity. I am a proud descendant of Lou Henry, and I thoroughly enjoy First Lady Lou as performed by Jane Fellows. I was too young to meet my great-grandmother during her life, but Jane Fellows’ depiction of Lou Henry gives me the opportunity to feel as if I have met her, after all.”
– Leslie Hoover-Lauble
New Century Players had the distinct pleasure of hosting the run of a production of First Lady Lou performed by Jane Fellows in January of 2017. Jane has an uncanny ability to embody the character of a very special human being and give us a glimpse into another angle on history. The depth of her portrayal shows a special care in its commitment to getting the story right. The audience is given a gift in a new appreciation for a woman who was an extraordinary part of American history.
– Kelley Marchant, Artistic Director, New Century Players, Milwaukie, Oregon
First Lady Lou
a one woman show
written by Rebecca Christian
adapted by Jane Fellows
About the show
Jane Fellows has performed this show since 2014, in several Oregon venues.
“Being able to share this part of history through the lens of this extraordinary woman is at once humbling and a distinct honor.” -- Jane Fellows
FIRST LADY LOU showcases a remarkable woman and her adventurous, impactful life. Born in Iowa 25 years before the 20th Century, Lou Henry was raised both there and in California. A confident and accomplished outdoorswomen, she became the first female graduate in Geology at Stanford University, where she met Herbert Hoover. Their marriage began with relocation by steamship to China for Herbert’s work as a mining consultant and—following the Boxer rebellion--featured ongoing worldwide travels during his career as a mining consultant. She went on to become arguably America’s first “modern” First Lady, active in partnership with her husband in Washington as she had always been during his globe-trotting career.
When the audience enters the theatre, they are offered an opportunity to contribute to the show by writing, on notecards, questions that they might want Lou Henry Hoover to answer. Questions, perhaps, about her early years, or about meeting Herbert Hoover; questions about the Stanford years, the years travelling the world, or World War I; questions about the first years of the Girl Scouts of America, about the Presidency, or about her later years.
Throughout the show, sharing her Manhattan hotel suite, Lou takes the audience on the journey of her life. Act I occurs in 1914, on the day before Lou boards an ocean liner to rejoin Herbert in London. Act II takes place in 1944 near the end of her life.
Adaptation and first Oregon performances commissioned by the Colonial Dames of America in Oregon and the Hoover-Minthorn House Museum (Newberg, Oregon)
Premiere performances at Newberg (Oregon) Friends church
Subsequent performances 2015-2018
George Fox University
Mount Hood, Oregon Town Hall (sponsored by Leslie Hoover Lauble)
New Century Players
in repertory with
"The Belle of Amherst"
COMING - MARCH 24-30, 2020:
Four performances in Iowa,
presented by the Hoover Presidential Foundation and the Hoover Presidential Library and Museum
Details and Booking
Run time is 1 hour 40 minutes with intermission.
Technical requirements are minimal with all furnishings supplied by the actor.
Great educational opportunity!
For booking information please email