Jeff Edwards' professional dance career spanned 15 years (1983-1998) with three companies: the New York City Ballet, The Zurich Ballet, and The Lyon Opera Ballet. He has also been teaching for conservatories and professional ballet companies around the world since 1985. Edwards was named company teacher of the Lyon Opera Ballet in 1997 and has taught at the Conservatoire Nationale Superieur de Lyon, one of only three national conservatories in France. He has also taught for American Ballet Theatre, San Francisco Ballet, Boston Ballet, Ballett Frankfurt, Zurich Ballet, Cedar Lake Ensemble, Le Ballet du Grand Thêatre de Genève, Les Ballets de Monte Carlo, and the Norwegian National Ballet. Edwards has lectured on dance at Yale, U.C.L.A, and Williams College, and has taught ballet at Harvard College, Cornell University, Princeton University, and Brown University.

Edwards was hailed as "one of the most talented dancers to emerge from the Balanchine School in the last 25 years (Vanity Fair, 1993)." He began training as a gymnast when he was five years old. Serious classical training began a few years later when Mansur Kamaletdinov, former director of the Bolshoi Ballet, relocated to Pittsburgh to establish his own ballet school. Rigorous training in the Russian style provided Edwards with a technical base that helped him win a Ford Foundation scholarship at age 14 to study at the School of American Ballet (SAB) in New York. Edwards trained at the School of American Ballet (1979-1984) where under the tutelage of the great Danish teacher Stanley Williams, he was encouraged to begin teaching at an early age. After his third year of study at SAB, George Balanchine instituted the Special Men's Class to nurture male talent at the school. Chosen by Balanchine, Edwards became one of the class's seven charter members. In his senior year Alexandra Danilova cast him as the Prince in the school's annual workshop performance of Aurora's Wedding. He was invited to join the New York City Ballet (NYCB) in 1984, one year after Balanchine's death.

During his first season with NYCB, Edwards was presented with the challenge of dancing the title role created for Baryshnikov in Jerome Robbins's Opus 19/The Dreamer with Patricia McBride. Soon after, he took on several principal roles in other Robbins's repertory, including Afternoon of a Faun and The Goldberg Variations. His Balanchine repertory includes the role of Melancholic in The Four Temperaments, Oberon in A Midsummer Night's Dream, the Pas de Six from Napoli, the Cavalier in The Nutcracker, as well as starring roles in Duo Concertante, Le Baiser de la Fée, and Une Porte et une Soupir. He originated roles in Peter Martins's Les Petits Riens, Fearful Symmetries, and Mozart Serenade. He was promoted to soloist in 1989.

At NYCB, Edwards was inspired to break out of the Balanchine and Robbins mold in roles created for him by visiting choreographers. William Forsythe created both of his NYCB works Behind the China Dogs and Herman Schmerman on him. Excited by the creative process of these groundbreaking works, Edwards left NYCB to work with other European-based choreographers who do not often collaborate with American companies.

In 1992, he joined the Zurich Ballet as a premier danseur. There, he expanded his artistic range in dances by Hans van Manen, and Mats Ek, as well as in historic works by Nijinsky and Petipa. He choreographed his first work, Pas Menu, for the company in 1994. That same year, he decided to expand further his experience as a contemporary dancer by joining the Lyon Opera Ballet in France, a company famed for its eclectic repertory. Under resident choreographer Bill T. Jones, Edwards toured more than 30 countries dancing modern works by Jones, theatrical works by Maguy Marin, the role of Romeo in Angelin Preljocaj's Romeo and Juliet, and Nacho Duato's role in Jiri Kylian's Stamping Ground.

In addition to extensive stage experience, Edwards has danced on television both in the United States and abroad. He has written articles about dance for numerous publications including Dance Magazine and Ballet Review. Edwards has also been profiled as an artist in Time, Vogue, Elle, Vanity Fair, and Interview magazines. He is currently featured as a dancer with Merrill Ashley and Suki Schorer in the DVD-release The Balanchine Essays, a documentation of the Balanchine technique.

In 1998, Edwards retired from the stage and became a full-time student at Brown University. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude, and with departmental honors in 2002 with a degree in Modern Culture and Media. While at Brown, he designed and taught a course on contemporary dance repertory. Edwards was also involved in the production of several dance documentaries with Dance in America at PBS. In 2001, he became the Director of Education at Twyla Tharp Dance in New York and worked with Tharp to develop a project to make her repertory accessible to universities and conservatories around the world.  Edwards then worked and studied under the direction of Michael Kaiser at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington D.C. for a year on a Fellowship. He recently choreographed a film starring Katie Holmes, Allison Janney and William Hurt that will premiere next year.
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