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Family entertainment

Critic's picks

'David Dorfman Dance.' "David Dorfman Dance." (David Dorfman Dance)
By Karen Campbell
Globe Correspondent / April 10, 2011

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DAVID DORFMAN DANCE Today’s your last chance to catch the World Music/CRASHarts appearance by this quirky, exuberant troupe, which has been charming audiences for 26 years. The company presents the Boston premiere of “Prophets of Funk — Dance to the Music,’’ fueled by the funk grooves of Sly and the Family Stone. April 10. $40. Institute of Contemporary Art. 617-876-4275, www.worldmusic.org

A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM Boston Ballet’s production of Balanchine’s first original full-length ballet is a delight. Set to Mendelssohn’s effervescent score, with gorgeous sets and costumes and a bevy of adorable children, this is an excellent choice for the family. Through April 17. $25-$137 ($20 student rush). Boston Opera House. 617-695-6955, www.Bostonballet.org

TIDAL FORCES José Mateo Ballet Theatre offers a great introduction to ballet for families, with up-close cabaret-type seating. (And snacking is part of the fun!) This program features “Still Waters,’’ set to the luminous music of Debussy; the powerful “Presage,’’ to a score by Górecki, and the Philip Glass-driven “Over & Over.’’ Through April 17. $38. Sanctuary Theatre, Cambridge. 617-354-7467, www.BalletTheatre.org

LOS MUÑEQUITOS DE MATANZAS Jacob’s Pillow and MASS MoCA co-present this Cuban group, masters of Afro-Cuban ritual, rumba music, and dance. In its first and only New England appearance in nine years, the high-energy troupe conjures the complex drumming, vocals, and dancing of the streets of Matanzas. April 30-May 1. $10-$29. MASS MoCA’s Hunter Center, North Adams. 413-662-2111, www.massmoca.org

SEEKERS: A BI-COASTAL DANCE IMPROVISATION Conceived and directed by Kinodance Company’s Alissa Cardone and Alla Kovgan, this performance explores the need for connection in our technological world, using an improvisational score to link four performers in Boston and four performers in Los Angeles (broadcast onto monitors in Atlantic Wharf’s Waterfront Square) in a real-time cross-country movement dialogue. April 30 at 5 p.m. Free. CyberartsCentral at Atlantic Wharf. 617-524-8495, www.bostoncyberarts.org

¡CUBANIA! José Mateo Ballet Theatre wraps up its 25th anniversary season with a program going back to Mateo’s Cuban roots, highlighted by the world premiere of a ballet set to an original score by Cuban-born Aruán Ortiz, blending contemporary classical music and Afro-Cuban jazz. May 6-22. $38. Sanctuary Theatre, Cambridge. 617-354-7467, www.BalletTheatre.org

ALICE IN WONDERLAND Boston Ballet School Newton’s spring showcase features a family-friendly production of Lewis Carroll’s beloved children’s story set to music by Tchaikovsky, with choreography by Tamara King and newly created sets and costumes. On Sunday, a special family four-pack gets you into a pre-performance Mother’s Day “Alice in Wonderland’’ Tea Party, too. May 6-8. $25-$100. Babson College’s Sorenson Center for the Arts, Wellesley. 617-456-6263, www.bostonballet.org/school

BALANCHINE/ROBBINS This one may not be for the tots, but for young dance fans you can’t go wrong with this program honoring two of the greatest ballet choreographers of the past century. The program pairs Balanchine’s “Divertimento No. 15’’ (Mozart) and “Symphony in Three Movements’’ (Stravinsky) with Robbins’s “Afternoon of a Faun’’ and “Antique Epigraphs,’’ both to music by Debussy. May 12-22. $25-$137 ($20 student rush). Boston Opera House. 617-695-6955, www.bostonballet.org

BALLROOM WITH A TWIST Families hooked on such shows as “So You Think You Can Dance’’ and “Dancing With the Stars’’ get a hit of live song and dance action from a cast of young talent with this show conceived and choreographed by “DWTS’’ hunk Louis Van Amstel. May 15 at 2 p.m. Tickets $25-$50. Reagle Music Theatre at Robinson Theatre, Waltham. 781-891-5600, www.reaglemusictheatre.com

COMPLEXIONS CONTEMPORARY BALLET Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson, two of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s most gifted alumni and frequent contributors to the hit TV show “So You Think You Can Dance,’’ have assembled a dynamite troupe of dancers and wide-ranging repertoire that is lyrically athletic. This Celebrity Series program features all new works by Rhoden. May 20-22. $40-$65. Cutler Majestic Theatre. 617-482-6661, www.celebrityseries.org