Jeffrey Cirio began his ballet training at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, under the direction of Marcia Dale Weary, where he studied privately with Laszlo Berdo. He also studied at Boston Ballet School under the direction of Deirdre Miles Burger and Franco DaVita. In 2006, he was awarded a Grand Prix medal in the regionals, and a gold medal in the New York finals of Youth America Grand Prix. He went on to win a bronze medal at the 2006 U.S. International Ballet Competition in Jackson, MS (coached by Magaly Suarez and Rolando Sarabia). Cirio became a trainee with Boston Ballet School, and represented Boston Ballet School at the Tanzolymp Ballet Competition and Festival where he won a gold medal. He also participated in an exchange with the Royal Danish Ballet. He joined Boston Ballet II for the 2007-2008 season. Cirio then went on to train at Orlando Ballet School with Peter Stark and Olivier Munoz. At the request of Bruce Marks, he represented Orlando Ballet at the 5th Seoul International Dance Competition, where he was awarded a silver medal. He danced principal roles with both Orlando Ballet II and the company, and had the privilege of being named the Fernando Bujones scholar for 2008-2009.
Cirio’s other awards include “Best Male Dancer” at the 2006 American Ballet Competition, a silver level award in ballet at the National Foundation for Advancement of the Arts 2009 Arts Week, the Senior Grand Prix Award and the Mary Day Award for Artistry at the 2009 Youth America Grand Prix, and a gold medal at the 2009 World Ballet Competition. He went on to win a gold medal at the 2009 Helsinki International Ballet Competition, becoming the first American to do so. In 2011, he received an award from the Boomerang Fund for Artists.
Cirio returned to Boston Ballet in 2009 as a corps de ballet member and was awarded the coveted Princess Grace Fellowship for 2009. He was promoted to second soloist in 2010, soloist in 2011 and principal in 2012, after his performance of Basilio in Nureyev’s “Don Quixote” (for which he received an Honorable Mention in Pointe Magazine’s “Standout Performances of the Year 2012.”) Cirio has appeared in numerous works with Boston Ballet, including, Prince Desire and Blue Bird in “The Sleeping Beauty”; the Prince in Ashton’s “Cinderella”; Prince Siegfried in “Swan Lake”; the Bronze Idol and Solor in Florence Clerc’s “La Bayadere”; Oberon and Puck in Balanchine’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream ”; the Nutcracker, Cavalier, Snow King and Russian Lead in the Nissinen’s “The Nutcracker”; Mercutio and Benvolio in Cranko’s “Romeo & Juliet”; the principal male role in Lander’s “Etudes;” the peasant pas in “Giselle;” the pas de trois in “Paquita;” and Gustave in Caniparoli’s “The Lady of the Camellias.” He also performed the “Harlequinade” pas, Bournonville’s “William Tell” pas and “Flower Festival at Genzano” pas. His Balanchine roles include the principal roles in “Theme and Variations” and “Ballo della Regina,” the jumping role in “Symphony in Three Movements,” Melancholic in “The Four Temperaments,” the Third Movement in “Symphony in C,” Frantz in “Coppelia,” “Tarantella,” and both the Diamonds pas and Rubies pas in “Jewels.” Cirio originated and performed the principal role in Jorma Elo’s “Elo Experience” with prima ballerina, Larissa Ponomarenko, (for which they received Pointe Magazine’s “Standout Performances of the Year 2011” award), and in “Awake Only.” In addition, he has performed in numerous other works by Jorma Elo, and in works by Kylian (“Sech Tanze,” “Symphony of Psalms,” “Tar and Feathers”), Forsythe (“The Second Detail” and “The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude”), McGregor (“Chroma”), Martinez (“Resonance”), Ekman (“Cacti”), Wheeldon (“Polyphonia”), van Manen (“Black Cake”), Bruce (“Rooster”), Pickett (“Tabula Rasa”) and Robbins (“Fancy Free”). During the company’s tour to London in 2013, Cirio was nominated for the Best Male Classical Dance Performance at the National Dance Awards in the UK for his performance in Elo’s “Plan to B.” Cirio joined American Ballet Theatre in September 2015 as a Soloist and was promoted to Principal in June 2016. His roles at ABT included leading roles in “Company B,” “After You,” “After Effect,” “Chamber Symphony,” “Her Notes,” “Serenade after Plato’s Symposium,” and “Symphonic Variations.” He danced the roles of Colas in “La Fille Mal Gardee,” Basilio in “Don Quixote,” Solor in “La Bayadere,” Ali and Lankendem in “Le Corsaire,” Prince Guidon in “The Golden Cockerel,” Lensky in “Onegin,” the Son in “The Prodigal Son,” Harlequin in “Harlequinade,” the Prince in “The Nutcracker,” Mercutio in “Romeo & Juliet,” Bluebird in “The Sleeping Beauty,” Eros in “Sylvia,” the Boy in “Whipped Cream,” Gigue in “Mozartiana,” and Benno in “Swan Lake” among others. He was nominated in 2017 for the Benois de la Danse for his roles in “La Fille Mal Gardee” and “The Prodigal Son.”
Cirio performs in galas and events both nationally and internationally, including the Vail International Dance Festival, with Daniel Ulbricht’s Stars of American Ballet, and in Mongolia and Japan with Altan Dugaraa & Friends. Cirio had the privilege of dancing at the 2014 Kennedy Center Honors in Washington, D.C. honoring Patricia McBride, where he danced Balanchine’s Rubies pas de deux with Lauren Lovette of New York City Ballet. In the fall of 2017, he was a guest artist with English National Ballet, performing several principal roles and the role of Hilarion in Akram Khan’s Giselle. He also appeared in the cinematic version of Khan’s Giselle.
Cirio’s latest efforts have been in the area of choreography, choreographing numerous competition solos, pieces for Boston Ballet, Boston Ballet II, Ballet Academy East and the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. His work for the 2014 Boston Ballet @ Home show, “of Trial,” was well-received, and he was commissioned to create a piece for the spring of 2015 for the Boston Opera House stage, titled, “fremd,” which was funded by a Jerome Robbins Foundation grant. He took part in Joffrey Ballet’s 2016 “Winning Works” program, for which he choreographed, “Chapter 1, Chapter 6.” Cirio has also formed The Cirio Collective with his sister, Lia, Principal with Boston Ballet. Cirio Collective is a summer project that brings together dancers and choreographers to work and perform in a residency environment, and to create without fear of failure. The Collective created and performed “MiniM” in its inaugural year at Cape Dance Festival and Vineyard Arts Project. In their second season, the Collective collaborated with musicians to create another piece entitled, “Efil Ym Fo Flah” (Half Of My Life). In 2017, the Collective was invited to perform at The Joyce Theater Ballet Festival for a full evening performance, for which Jeffrey choreographed “In The Mind: The Other Room.” This year, Cirio has been commissioned to create a work for the Fire Island Dance Festival.
Photo: Roberto Matteo Photography