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John Patrick Ruffo (born 8 March 1988) is an Australian singer, songwriter, dancer, actress and television presenter notable for being a finalist on the 2011 X Factor Australia third season. Third in the competition, he signed a recording deal with Sony Music Australia. In 2012, Ruffo won Dancing's twelfth season with Stars Australia. His June 2012 debut single "On Top" peaked at number 14 on the ARIA Singles Chart and was certified platinum. Ruffo appeared in the 2013-2016 Australian soap opera Home and Away as Chris Harrington.

Johnny Ruffo announced on Instagram his brain cancer has returned
Johnny Ruffo announced on Instagram his brain cancer has returned


Pop singer who finalized The X Factor Australia's third season 2011. He released the debut single "On Top," peaked at #14 on the ARIA Singles Chart and went platinum-certified. He toured the Block with New Kids.

In front of Fame

He began studying guitar and piano at age twelve, writing his first song two years later.


He's also an actress, cast as Chris Harrington on Australian soap opera Home and Away.

The family's life

He was born to Jill and Pascoe Ruffo in Balcatta, Western Australia, who separated as an infant. He has model Tahnee Sims.

Related to

He won twelve season dancing with Luda Kroitor's partner Stars Australia.

The early days of life

Born to parents Jill and Pascoe Ruffo in Balcatta, Western Australia. Ruffo's parents split at age three. He spent much of his childhood living in his mother's tiny Homeswest unit. Ruffo started pursuing his dream of music at the age of 12, following his idol, Michael Jackson. He also taught himself how to play guitar and piano, composing his first song at 14. Ruffo attended Balcatta Senior High School. Before joining The X Factor, he worked as a concreter and joined the business thanks to his father working in the trade. Ruffo performed with electropop band Supanova around Perth.

2011: X Australia Factor

In 2011, Ruffo successfully auditioned The X Factor Australia's third season, performing Jay Sean's "Do You Remember" He finally hit live shows, being mentored by Guy Sebastian. Ruffo was announced on November 22, 2011, placing third in the series, while fellow contestant Reece Mastin was announced as winner.

2011–2014: record contract, Stars, Home and Away dancing

Shortly after The X Factor's completion, Ruffo told News Limited on 30 November 2011 that he was offered a record deal with a major record label whose name he was not allowed to confirm at the time. He also announced that he had already recorded some new tracks, saying "I've been in the studio in Perth recording some singles, quite a few different tracks so we can get the right one out there for my first release. The songs are very much my style, which is pop, R&B, mainstream sort of stuff" In December 2011, Ruffo told Take 40 Australia he'd recorded a duet with Guy Sebastian, his X Factor mentor. He co-hosted Nova's Fresh Hits with Gawndy on Nova FM on 16 December 2011. On 20 December 2011, Ruffo performed at the Melbourne State Library as part of the Optus Celebrity Carols campaign to raise funds for World Vision Australia.

In January 2012, Ruffo announced via his official Twitter account working on his New York City debut album. He was in support of Reece Mastin's first national headlining tour in Adelaide on January 28, 29, and 31. The record label Ruffo signed with was Sony Music Australia in March 2012. The following month, he became a celebrity contestant on Dancing with the Stars' twelfth season and partnered with professional dancer Luda Kroitor.[14][15] Later that month, Ruffo was a supporting act for the Australian leg of their Up All Night Tour by One Direction.[16] On 18 April 2012, Ruffo was revealed as the runner-up of the 2012 Bachelor of the Year contest by Cleo magazine. In May 2012, he was a supporting act for New Kids on their NKOTBSB Tour's Australian leg of Block and Backstreet Boys.

Ruffo's debut "On Top" released on June 15, 2012. The song peaked at number 14 on the ARIA Singles Chart and was certified platinum by the Australian Music Industry Association (ARIA) denoting 70,000-copy shipments.[20][21] Ruffo was revealed on 17 June 2012 as Dancing with the Stars winner. His show wins were donated to charity Kids Off The Streets. In September 2012, Ruffo joined The X Factor's fourth season live shows as host of the X Streaming Digital Live Show. His second single "Take It Home" released on October 19, 2012, reached number 30 on the ARIA Singles Chart.

In April 2013, as Chris Harrington, Ruffo made his acting debut in Australian soap opera Home and Away. He was originally contracted in 16 series, but this was later expanded. Ruffo's third single "Untouchable" released on July 12, 2013, debuted on the ARIA Singles Chart at number 39.

2015–2016: "She Got That O" and "White Christmas"

Ruffo released his fourth single "She Got That O" independently in May 2015, but not charting. On 11 December 2015, Ruffo released a Christmas single, "White Christmas" On April 27, 2016, Channel 7 revealed via its Twitter account that Ruffo left Home and Away to try new challenges. Ruffo said, "I've loved my time in Summer Bay. There's a lot more coming up for Chris and I hope fans continue enjoying his time on screen." Ruffo's final episode of Home and Away screened on September 22, 2016. On May 10, 2016, Ruffo was revealed to be featured in the Channel Nine miniseries, House of Bond, about former WA businessman Alan Bond, to be filmed in Perth and Sydney. House of Bond aired April 24-25, 2017.

2017–Current: Brain tumor and Broken Glass

On August 10, 2017, it was revealed that Ruffo underwent surgery to remove a brain tumor found after he went to a migraine-stricken hospital. Ruffo posted post-operative images on his social media pages, requesting fans to keep him in their thoughts" A week later, Ruffo announced he'd been diagnosed with brain cancer and start intensive treatment as soon as possible.

During a May 2019 radio interview, Ruffo told Fitzy & Wippa "currently clear of cancer" In June 2019, Ruffo released his first new four-year single, "Broken Glass" Ruffo told Channel 7 "This song is probably the most vulnerable song I've written. It's very personal for me. It's loosely about my experiences in the past two or three years – and about being down and out – not necessarily about cancer, but about anything like depression or losing a loved one." In November 2020 Ruffo announced via Instagram that his Brain Cancer had returned.


Ruffo cites Michael Jackson, Usher and Justin Timberlake as his musical influences for mixing his love of singing and dancing.


Supporting intervention

  • Mastin's Australian Tour (2012)
  • One-way all-night tour: Australian leg (2012)
  • New children on the NKOTBSB Tour: Australian leg (2012)


As a cancer survivor, Johnny Ruffo has had to take extra precautions due to the coronavirus pandemic, but he's also back in the (home) studio.