Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet

When: Fri., June 1, 7 p.m. and Sat., June 2, 2 p.m. 2012

Big box ballet? Cedar Lake was founded in 2003 by Walmart heiress Nancy Laurie, but you won't find any mass-produced, cheap products coming out of their studio. Thanks, ironically, to the Walmart connection, the company can afford to take a lot of chances with the productions they mount. Artistic Director Benoit-Swan Pouffer leads the 16-member troupe through edgy, experimental works by choreographers like Jo Strømgren, Angelin Preljocaj, Hofesh Shechter, and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui.

Teaching Emily Blunt to dance. The company got a bit of silver screen exposure in last year's thriller The Adjustment Bureau, starring Matt Damon and Emily Blunt. Blunt stars as a Cedar Lake dancer, and she actually trained rigorously with Pouffer to prepare for the role.

This ain't their first rodeo. Cedar Lake performed at Spoleto in 2009, where they stripped down to their skivvies and danced in socks. They earned high praise from our critic, who called them "fearlessly talented with a radically different vision."

Erica Jackson Curran

Price: $20-$65

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