The Palace Theatre was solely owned by Danbury real estate mogul. Shortly before I was hired the owner was brought up on manslaughter charges for throwing a man down a set of stairs after finding him in one of the owner’s vacant properties. As soon as I found this out it made it personally difficult for me to work for the owner. But I needed the job and continued to work for artists and the community. It wasn’t long, however, before the owner’s focus turned from anything we had been trying to accomplish at the theatre to his legal trouble. The practical result for me was that it made it very difficult to do the job. Time and again I would develop a relationship with a publicist, agent or manager of a particular artist I was trying to get. I’d negotiate the contract, budget the show, agree on terms, riders, etc — and then I couldn’t get the owner to sign the contract.
It became clear to me that the owner’s legal bills were affecting either his willingness or ability to give the green light on one project after another. As the artistic director, it became very difficult to plan and execute performances — much less plan a season. After a while of working under these circumstances, I was beginning to feel my reputation could be in jeopardy. So it was time to go. For more information, see the following article links: