Anita Menon is a director and choreographer who is recognized as one of the leading exponents of Bharatanatyam, a classical dance form originating in Southern India. Anita is the recipient of the prestigious Performing Arts Fellowship in 2014 from the Regional Arts and Culture Council , the first Asian-American to receive this honor.
As the Founder and Artistic Director of the Anjali School of Dance, her classical yet inventive approach, creates an exceptional style that is distinct, meaningful and appealing to diverse audiences around the world.
Besides choreographing dances with strong women role models including Jhansi Ki Rani, Meerabhai and Chitrangadha, her passion has been to choreograph Western stories through Indian dance including Red Riding Hood, Pegasus and Wizard of Oz. Anita has directed theatrical productions that are Indian adaptations of Classical Western plays including Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream as well as Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot murder mystery “Death on the Nile” titled Murder on the Ganges. Her productions are known for their big dance numbers using several styles of dance including Indian folk, Ballet, HipHop, Jazz and Bollywood.
She co-directed The Jungle Book at Northwest Children’s Theater MainStage during the 2014-2015 season, which subsequently received four Portland Area Musical Theater Award nominations. As a dancer, Anita has traveled the world delivering performances in the United States, India, France, United Kingdom, Malaysia and Singapore. Anita also serves on the board of the Northwest Children’s Theater as well as the Regional Arts and Culture Council.