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Bad Boys of Dance combine ballet, hip-hop and a Broadway sensibility

There’s no shortage of attitude displayed in video clips of performances by the Bad Boys of Dance, nor on the troupe’s website.  This TV clip (with lyric titles no less) combines a Chippendale-like, bare-chested insouciance with something out of a Michael Flatley-induced nightmare.

Similarly, here’s a sample of an interview with founder Rasta Thomas:

Q: Why did you name your company Bad Boys of Dance?

A: Because that’s what I am and that’s who we are.

Q: Why did you start Bad Boys of Dance?

A: I was bored and up for the challenge.

Alrighty, then. Still, these boys can move. They made their debut at Jacob’s Pillow, an institution for which I have the utmost respect. And while their claim to fame is entertainment on the STOMP! or Blue Man Group level, they do combine ballet, hip-hop, and a Broadway sensibility with panache. Here’s another clip.

Thomas was one of the stars of Twyla Tharp’s “Movin’ Out,” and he’s seemingly upped the ante here. The troupe struts its stuff to songs by U2, Queen, Prince, and of course, Michael Jackson. Might be wise to leave your critical faculties at home.

Rasta Thomas’ Bad Boys of Dance, Friday, 7:30 p.m. Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, St. Paul. Tickets $25-$30. 651-224-4222.

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