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, performing with both the school and company. He traveled to Russia with Boston Ballet II to perform scenes from The Nutcracker, and represented Boston Ballet School at the Tanzolymp Ballet Competition and Festival where he won a gold medal. He participated in an exchange with Royal Danish Ballet, taking classes with the apprentices and company, culminating in a performance of Flower Festival in Genzano at the 2007 Boston Ballet Night of Stars. 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. Upon his arrival he was asked by Bruce Marks to represent 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.”) Heralded as “simply sensational” by The Boston Globe and "fiercely masculine" by Pointe Magazine, 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”; and the principal male role in Lander’s “Etudes.” His Balanchine roles include the principal role in “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 other works by Balanchine, Bournonville, Elo, Kylian, Forsythe, McGregor, Martinez, Ekman, van Manen, and Robbins. During the company’s tour to London in 2013, Cirio was nominated for the Best Male Classical Dance Performance at the National Dance Awards for his performance in Elo’s “Plan to B.”
Cirio performs in galas and events both nationally and internationally, including the Vail International Dance Festival, where he has performed with Maria Kotchetkova, Misa Kuranaga, and Tiler Peck. He also dances with Daniel Ulbricht’s Stars of American Ballet, and in Mongolia with Altan Dugaraa & Friends. Most recently, 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 2015, Cirio joined American Ballet Theatre as a soloist and in August 2016 he was promoted to Principal.
Cirio’s latest efforts have been in the area of choreography, choreographing numerous competition solos, pieces for Boston Ballet, Boston Ballet II, and Ballet Academy East. His work for 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 awarded a Jerome Robbins Foundation grant. Cirio is also choreographing a work for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet for their 2015 June Show. Additionally, Cirio is working on a project entitled “Cirio Collective,” a group of dancers who will perform a world premiere of Cirio’s during the summer of 2015 at the Cape Dance Festival. Cirio’s vision and desire are to annually gather dancers and choreographers for a summer project, in which collaboration can take place without outside distractions or fear of failure.
Photo: Roberto Matteo Photography