The State Theatre will reopen this fall, according to an announcement we just received. (It's in full below.)
Brief answers to the questions we know you have:
1) No shows are booked as of yet.
2) Renovations are continuing. Most of them are infrastructural at the moment, but there will be cosmetic ones coming in a few months - including a rebuilt stage, new green and dressing rooms, a new sound system, upgraded bars, and a new seating configuration (including a general admission no-seats pit!).
3) Lauren Wayne, who used to book shows there when she was working for LiveNation, will be working as general manager.
4) There's a Web site - statetheatreportland.com - which is not yet operating.
5) Follow them on Facebook and Twitter.
6) Capacity slated at 1450 to start with.
7) Lauren said she really wanted to stress the value of the venue to the entire scene, and wants "to build on what we have," spreading the word nationally about what a great place Portland is.
THE BOWERY PRESENTS AND ALEX CROTHERS TO REOPEN
PORTLAND, MAINE’S STATE THEATRE IN FALL 2010
LAUREN WAYNE TO SERVE AS GENERAL MANAGER OF THE
EXPECTS 80 SHOWS A YEAR IN PORTLAND
Theatre Renovations Continue with Upgrades to Sound and Lighting and
Refurbishment of Venue
(New York, NY) May 26, 2010…The Bowery Presents, an independent
promotion company based in New York City, and Alex Crothers of Higher Ground
Presents, an independent promoter and a fixture in the New England music scene,
have announced today that they have signed a deal with Stone Coast Properties
to reopen the State Theatre in Portland, Maine. Music industry veteran and
Portland local Lauren Wayne will serve as General Manager of the State Theatre
and will lead the charge in booking the venue, with the first shows slated to
begin this fall. The historic theatre has been closed since 2006, and the new
partnership between The Bowery Presents and Alex Crothers will continue the
upgrades to the historic theatre started by the owners.
The Bowery Presents and Mr. Crothers will be equal partners in
operating and programming all music events at the State Theatre, with Lauren
Wayne reporting to both parties. The group expects to book approximately 80
shows a year with a cross section of live music from diverse performers. In addition to the State Theatre, the
partnership will explore options to book other venues and festivals in the area
and develop marketing and partnerships opportunities for their concerts.
“Until Alex brought us this opportunity, we hadn’t envisioned expanding
into Maine,” said Jim Glancy, The Bowery Presents. “But once we visited
Portland and toured the State Theatre, we fell in love with the City and saw
the potential in the theatre that will appeal to Portland’s creative community.
Bringing Lauren on board provided us with a great asset in the Portland and was
the icing on the cake.”
In addition to booking performances at the State Theatre, Ms. Wayne
will oversee all operations of the theatre including production management, box
office and ticketing, concessions and other sales. Her office will be on site
at the venue.
“I am excited and honored to be involved with the renovation efforts
and overall management of the State Theatre,” said Ms. Wayne. “With further
refurbishing, the State will once again serve as an amazing, beautiful showcase
for bands – and it will be exciting to have local audiences as well as
audiences from all over New England enjoy this historic venue. The renovated State will be a great addition
to Portland’s thriving creative economy.”
Ms. Wayne will also oversee renovations and continue on the progress
that Stone Coast Properties began on the State Theatre. Recent renovations include electrical work,
relocating the men’s and women’s rooms and ceiling refurbishments, ensuring the
historic venue is code compliant. The new partnership plans to restore the
stage and modernize the venue with new sound systems, including work to the
theatre’s acoustics, and updating the lighting. The entire theatre will also be
reseated, creating new site lines, giving the audiences better views of the
performers. The new venue capacity is expected to be 1,450. In addition, there
will be upgrades to the dressing rooms, new administrative offices,
refurbishment of the bars, and new carpet installed.
“I am thrilled to have a hand in reviving the State Theatre, a jewel in
the Portland-area music scene and a legacy in New England,” said Mr. Crothers.
“Reopening the theatre provided the perfect opportunity to work with Jim and
John at Bowery Presents. We've flirted
for years and now we have our first date.
Our companies share the same philosophy for restoring the State Theatre
and bringing quality entertainment to the area.”
State Theatre opened on November 8, 1929 and was designed in a
semi-Atmospheric/Spanish style with an original seating capacity of 2,300. It
operated as a first run movie house until the late-1960, when it became a porn theatre.
In 1989, the theatre was closed and fell into disrepair. By the mid-1990's, the
theatre was saved and restored. It closed for a brief time after its
restoration and was reopened by new owners as a performing arts and concert
venue. The State Theatre hosted such
diverse acts as Wilco, Modest Mouse, Gillian Welch, David Byrne, Interpol,
Snoop Dogg, Ray LaMontagne, Sonic Youth, John Hiatt and Kings of Leon before it
closed in early-2006.
am excited to have signed a long term agreement with Bowery Presents and Alex
Crothers,” said Ron Goglia, Stone Coast Properties. “With Bowery Presents’ expertise opening
theatres, Alex’s knowledge and love of Portland, and their combined reputation
in the music world, we knew this team would be the ideal tenants to bring the
State Theatre back to life.”
State Theatre is located at 609 Congress Street in the heart of the Portland Arts District. For
more information on the State Theatre, updates on its renovation and concert
announcements, please go to www.statetheatreportland.com.
About The Bowery Presents:
The Bowery Presents is an independent
promotion company based in New York City.
With a core business based around great music, its mission is to bring
the best bands to the best venues and to provide a great concert experience for
fans and artists, along with reasonable ticket prices. Over the years, Bowery Presents has worked
with a vast cross-section of some of the most talented performing artists,
including established names such as Willie Nelson, Aretha Franklin, John Prine,
Ringo Starr and Joe Jackson and new artists like LCD Soundsystem, Kings of
Leon, Muse, My Morning Jacket, The White Stripes/Raconteurs/Dead Weather, Band
of Horses, John Mayer, Modest Mouse, Silversun Pickups, The National, The
Flaming Lips, Guster, Bright Eyes, MIA, Passion Pit, and Deadmau5. The company’s activities center on programming live
music in the venues that it owns and operates including several New York and
New Jersey music venues, such as Terminal 5, The Bowery Ballroom, Mercury
Lounge, Music Hall of Williamsburg, and the Wellmont Theatre in Montclair,
NJ. The Bowery Presents also presents
shows at other venues in New York City such as Madison Square Garden, Radio
City Music Hall, and the Beacon Theater, and across the Northeast such as the
Constellation Brands-Marvin Sands Performing Art Center located on the campus
of Finger Lakes Community College in upstate New York. The company recently
launched The Bowery Presents: Boston, an extension of the company with an
office headquartered in Boston at the Royale. Michael Swier and John Moore of The Bowery Presents have presented
music at the Mercury Lounge, the Bowery Ballroom and Webster Hall over the past
15 years. Jim Glancy, former president
of the New York division of Live Nation, joined the company as partner in
2006. For further information go to www.bowerypresents.com
About Alex Crothers:
Crothers is the co-owner of Higher Ground based in So. Burlington, Vermont – an
independent concert promotion company and separate music venue that produces
more than 420 events a year in the region. Mr. Crothers opened the venue
in 1998 and has produced over 4,000 events in that time, recently steering it
through a successful relocation. Over the
years, Higher Ground has been able to identify and attract both rising stars as
well as legends -- including John Mayer, Norah Jones, Jack Johnson, David
Gray, Sean Paul, Taj Mahal, Dr. John, Godsmack, Jurassic 5, Kings of Leon, My
Morning Jacket, MGMT, Black Eyed Peas, KT Tunstall, Black Crowes and Mos
Def. Mr. Crothers
also developed several successful outdoor concerts series and actively promotes
concerts throughout New England the New York tri-state area by such artists as
Bob Dylan, Wilco, Spearhead, Grace Potter, Crosby Stills & Nash, Willie
Nelson, and Alison Krauss. Crothers co-produced the first two years of OSHEAGA music
& arts festival in Montreal, which features 75+ bands over 4 stages and is staging
a large festival in North Adams, MA with Wilco in August of this year. www.highergroundmusic.com