66ºF

Lauren Anderson: 'My job now is to give back what I've gotten'

Lauren Anderson, head of  the Houston Ballet’s Education and Community Engagement program and first African-AMerican prima ballerina of the company, talks with KPRC's Khambrel Marshall about her career and life during her interview for the digital Black History Month series, in January 2019.
Lauren Anderson, head of the Houston Ballet’s Education and Community Engagement program and first African-AMerican prima ballerina of the company, talks with KPRC's Khambrel Marshall about her career and life during her interview for the digital Black History Month series, in January 2019. (KPRC)

Lauren Anderson, a Third Ward  Houstonian, was the first African-American prima ballerina of the Houston Ballet, where she danced from 1983 to 2006, and one of the few African-American ballerinas at the head of a major ballet company anywhere in the world.

Her achievements have made her a role model for African-American girls all over the country and her performance of The Nutcracker 's Sugarplum Fairy made her one of the most beloved ballerinas in Houston.

In 2007, Anderson assumed her new role as head of Houston Ballet’s Education and Community Engagement program, where she conducts master classes at area schools, and lectures to students on dance and her historic career.

During her interview with KPRC's Khambrel Marshall as part of  KPRC's Black History Month series, Anderson shares her story of success, including fighting stereotypes of what a classical ballerina must look like, and the one role that helped her break that ceiling.