Guest Artists for The Nutcracker

Lia Cirio Principal Dancer, Boston Ballet, will perform as Sugar Plum

Lia Cirio

Principal Dancer, Boston Ballet, will perform as Sugar Plum

Lia Cirio began her training at Swarthmore Ballet Theatre with Lori Ardis. She went on to train at the Central Pennsylvania youth Ballet under the direction of Marcia Dale Weary and Darla Hoover, where she also studied privately with Theresa Crawford and Rafael Grigorian. At age 16, Cirio was awarded a Level One award from the National Foundation for Advancement of the Arts and was a Presidential Scholar in the Arts finalist. She was also awarded the top scholarship and Founders' Award presented by Barbara Weisberger at the Regional Dance America Festival. The same year, she was invited by Mikko Nissinen to join Boston Ballet II, and was Boston Ballet's Princess Grace Nominee for 2004. She was promoted to Boston Ballet's corps de ballet in 2004, to second soloist in 2006, and to soloist in 2007. From 2008-2009, Cirio toured with Trey McIntyre Project, performing throughout the U.S. and the world. She danced principal roles in a number of McIntyre's works. She returned to Boston Ballet for the 2009-2010 season and was named principal dancer in 2010. She has been hailed as "one of the most accomplished actress-dancers in the company" by The Patriot Ledger and as "an outstanding performer with tremendous stage presence" during Boston's tour to Spain. 

Paul Craig Principal Dancer, Boston Ballet, will perform as Cavalier

Paul Craig

Principal Dancer, Boston Ballet, will perform as Cavalier

Carolina Tavarez Snow Queen, Dew Drop 

Carolina Tavarez

Snow Queen, Dew Drop 

Paul Craig, of Manistee, Michigan started his training with Deb Knight at the Conservatory of Dance and with Jefferson Baum at the Blue Lake Fine Arts camnp. He was invited to train at the Virginia School of hte Arts with Petrus Bosman and Tyrone Brooks under a full scholarship. After graduating, he spent a year in Boston Ballet School as a trainee before being hired into Boston Ballet II and was promoted in the corps the following year. Craig has performed in numerous galas and schools around the U.S. including Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival, World Ballet Competition, and Cape Cod Dance Festival. In Boston Ballet's off season, he performs with the Cirio Collective and teaches in ballet schools around the country. 




Carolina Tavarez began her training in Santiago with Ballet Contempora. In 2008 she came to the United States to study on scholarship at The Washington School of Ballet where she trained with Kee Juan Han and Carlos Valcárcel. Carolina finished in the top 12 at the Youth America Grand Prix in 2009. In 2010 Carolina joined the Washington Ballet’s second company where she performed roles in Anne-Marie Holmes’ Le Corsaire and Don Quixote as well as Septime Weber’s Romeo and Juliet and The Nutcracker. Carolina was a member of Ballet Arizona from 2011-2016, where she danced in Romeo and JulietCinderella, Ib Andersen’s Nutcracker and La Bayadere. Carolina has also danced in George Balanchine’s Four TemperamentsSerenadeWalpurgisnachtEpisodes and Western Symphony.

Guest Artist for Intimate Evening


American Ballet Theater

Rachel Richardson began her training with John Grensback at the Oregon Ballet Academy and continued her training at the Eugene Ballet Academy under the direction of Toni Pimble. In 2009, she was awarded a scholarship to attend The Rock School for Dance Education's year round program in Philadelphia, under the direction of Bojan and Stephanie Spassoff.  While at The Rock School she competed in Youth America Grand Prix and won the silver medal at the New York City finals in 2013. Richardson has received scholarships to multiple summer intensives including Pacific Northwest Ballet, Bolshoi Ballet, Houston Ballet, Royal Ballet School and San Francisco Ballet. 

She has performed classical variations from RaymondaThe NutcrackerGrand pas ClasiqueGiselle, PaquitaEsmeralda, and Swan Lake, as well as works by Susan Jaffe, Antony Tudor, and Bruce Steivel.

In 2013 Richardson joined American Ballet Theatre's Studio Company under the direction of Kate Lydon.  She joined ABT as an apprentice in January 2015 and became a member of the corps de ballet in June 2015.  Her repertoire includes Columbine and one of the Nutcracker's Sisters in The Nutcracker and the Fairy Miettes qui tombent (Breadcrumb) and the Gold Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty, as well as roles in all of the Company's full-length ballets.