Awards: Youth America Grand Prix first place 2005, Festival de Danca de Joinville first place and best dancer 2006, Youth America Grand Prix Brazil first place 2007, Youth America Grand Prix Best Contemporary Dancer and Top 12 2008, Prix de Lausanne 2008
Irlan Silva received his dance training at the Centro de Dance Rio under the direction of Mariza Estrela. In 2005, he worked with Companhia Jovem do Rio de Janeiro, and with Theatro Municipal do Rio de Janeiro from 2006 to 2008, both under the direction of Dallal Achcar. During this time, Silva worked with important Brazilian and South American choreographers such as Luis Arrieta, Janice Botelho, Tindaro Silvano, Carlos dos Santos, Roseli Rodrigues, and Dallal Achcar.
Silva is the recipient of numerous awards. In 2005, he won first place at the Youth American Grand Prix USA and in 2006, he won first place and best dancer at Festival de Danca de Joinville in Brazil. In 2007, he won first place in the Senior Division of Youth America Grand Prix Brazil. Silva won the Best Contemporary Dancer Award at Youth America Grand Prix in 2008 and was a finalist in the Top Twelve Senior Division that same year. He also won a 2008 Prix de Lausanne in Switzerland where he secured a contract with America Ballet Theatre II (ABT II) in New York City. He then moved to the United States to dance with ABT II, American Ballet Theatre’s second company, where he performed at the Metropolitan Opera House for the 70th Anniversary Celebration of American Ballet Theatre. He also toured throughout the USA, Spain, Italy, France, and Switzerland. Silva joined Boston Ballet in 2011, and was promoted to second soloist in 2015 and soloist in 2016. He has performed numerous principal roles throughout his career, including George Balanchine’s Allegro Brillante and Emeralds (pas de trois), Harald Lander’s Études, Mikko Nissinen’s The Nutcracker (Harlequin), Florence Clerc’s La Bayadère (Golden Idol), Jerome Robbins’ Interplay, Jiří Kylián’s Tar and Feathers, William Forsythe’s The Second Detail, Christopher Bruce’s Rooster, Godie Gates’ A Test of Sweet Velvet, Aszure Barton’s Barbara, Antony Tudor’s Continuo, John Neumeier’s Third Symphony of Gustav Mahler and Nijinsky, and Marius Petipa and Ivan Liška’s Le Corsaire (Ali).
Silva has performed as a Guest Principal in the role of Cavalier in Rinus Sprong and Thom Stuart’s Nutcracker in Holland, as well as a guest artist in Rio de Janeiro. He has also starred in the documentary Only When I Dance.