Lauren Anderson (born February 19, 1965) is an American ballet dancer and a former principal dancer with the Houston Ballet. In 1990, she was the first African American ballerina to become a principal for a major dance company, an important milestone in American ballet.
Lauren is the only child of Lawrence Anderson, a school administrator, and Doris Parker-Morales, a classical piano teacher. From the age of seven she trained at Houston Ballet’s Ben Stevenson Academy. She is a Houston native and graduated from Lamar High School in 1982.
Anderson joined the Houston Ballet in 1983 and became a principal dancer in 1990.
Her performance of the title role in Cleopatra gave her international recognition. She has also performed works by George Balanchine and Sir Kenneth MacMillan, among others. Ms. Anderson originated the role of Cleopatra in the ballet of the same name created by Ben Stevenson, and her performance received reviews; the Boston Globe called Ms. Anderson “a powerhouse in interpreting the role that Stevenson created on her.”