Originally from Brazil, Paulo Arrais joined The Norwegian National Ballet in 2006, where he has worked with choreographers such as William Forsythe, Jiří Kylián, Paul Lightfoot and Sol León. He has danced classical lead roles such as the Jester in Holmes' Swan Lake, the Prince in Harvey's Sleeping Beauty, Basil in Nureyev's Don Quixote and Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet.
In 2009 Arrais took a four-year period of leave and moved to San Francisco to dance in Alonzo King's Lines Ballet. He has toured the USA, France and Italy, and danced as part of the centenary celebrations of the Ballets Russes in Monte Carlo. In 2010, he started dancing with the Boston Ballet, where he was promoted to First Soloist in 2011 and to Principal Dancer (the highest accolade) in 2012.
Arrais danced leading roles and parts in works by Balanchine, Nissinen, Cranko, Lander, Wheeldon, Kylián, Forsythe, Nureyev and Elo, and created his first choreography, Work in Progress, which was performed in Boston and London. In 2013 he was invited to choreograph for the Valentina Kozlova International Ballet Competition in New York, and to dance the Prince in Swan Lake at Opera di Roma.
Arrais returned to The Norwegian National Ballet as a Principal Dancer in 2013, and went straight into leading roles in Scarlett's Firebird and Vespertine, Forsythe's Steptext and Kylián's Wings of Wax.
Arrais trained at the Ballet Jovem do C.C.G.R., the Paris Opera Ballet School, the English National Ballet School and the Royal Ballet School, where he was awarded the Ninette de Valois Bursary when he graduated in 2006. He was one of the finalists at the New York International Ballet Competition in 2007 and the Youth American Grand Prix in 2003, where he also received a scholarship to the Paris Opera Ballet School from the Nureyev Foundation.