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 Wearyand Darla Hoover, where she studied privately with Theresa Crawford and Rafael Grigorian. At the age of 16, she 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 United States and worldwide. She danced principal roles in McIntyre’s Reassuring Effects of Form, Poetry,and A Day in the Life, and originated roles in various new works by McIntyre. She returned to Boston Ballet for the 2009-2010 season and was named principal dancer in 2010.
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, her repertory with Boston Ballet includes featured and/or principalroles in classics such as La Bayadere, Don Quixote, Etudes, Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty, La Sylphide, Giselle, Romeo and Juliet, Cinderella, Paquita, and Afternoon of the Faun, as well as corps roles in The Taming of the Shrew, The Lady of the Camellias, and La Fille Mal Gardee. She has danced featured and/or principal roles in Balanchine’s Coppelia, Symphony in Three Movements, Theme & Variations, Apollo, Divertimento #15, Who Cares?,Concerto Barocco, The Four Temperaments, Ballo de la Regina, La Valse, Serenade, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, in Robbins’ Antique Epigraphs and in Martins' Barber Violin Concerto. She has performed contemporary works by Elo, Kylian, Forsythe, Pickett, Tharp, Wheeldon, Morris, Myers, Bruce, and Caniparoli. She originated roles in Elo’s Carmen (Micaela), Brake the Eyes, and Sharper Side of Dark.
Cirio was named in Dance Magazine’s first “On the Rise” feature article, and has been featured in additional articles in Dance Magazine, Dance Spirit Magazine, and on the cover of Pointe. She is sister to fellow Principal, Jeffrey Cirio.