The French Twin Sisters in Billee Taylor

Helen French (1881)

[Born c.1863, died New York City 18 Oct 1901]

Dancers Helen and Minnie French appeared at New York's Standard Theatre with D'Oyly Carte's First Billee Taylor Company from February to May 1881. Billed as "The French Twin Sisters," the sisters danced the "Sailor's Hornpipe and special dance" according to the program. It was their only engagement with the D'Oyly Carte organization. The twins had earlier appeared on Broadway in a Tony Pastor burlesque of H.M.S. Pinafore called T.P.S. Canal Boat Pinafore (February-April 1879).

"The French Twin Sisters" first appeared on the vaudeville stage at age fourteen and were for years a very successful song and dance team. Helen French married William F. "Old Hoss" Hoey of the vaudeville team of Evans & Hoey. The twins had been engaged by Evans & Hoey to appear in A Parlor Match in 1885, and ended up marrying the team.

Page modified October 17, 2006 © 2002-06 David Stone