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Portland State Theatre Operator Evicted

(CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Chris Morgan, operator of the State Theatre in Portland, Maine, was evicted last week after a District Court judge denied his request for an injunction that would have let him continue negotiating with the owner of the popular venue.

Grant Wilson of Stonecoast Properties, who owns the building that houses the theater, filed a complaint against Morgan on January 10th, claiming the theatre failed to pay the $10,000 monthly rent and other bills on time, according to the Portland Press Herald. Morgan has been handling all operations at the facility since June of last year.

Wilson’s attorney told the paper that Morgan owed more than $26,000 as of January.

Morgan filed a motion for an injunction on Tuesday last week, claiming that with a lawyer he could prove “fraud and misrepresentation” by Wilson, but the court denied the request on Wednesday morning.

The theater has gone through tough times since its conversion from an X-rated movie theater in the 1980s, changing owners and operators several times.

Morgan had hoped to stabilize the operation by refurbishing the theater, investing in new sound and lighting equipment and attracting corporate sponsors. He plans to continue fighting for the theater, he told the paper.

Wilson’s property manager, Kelly Sawyer, said Stonecast is already looking to find a new operator for the venue.

“We plan to work hard to get the theater up and running again with a new tenant,” Sawyer told the Press Herald. “It hopefully won’t be down for very long.”

Currently, two shows remain on the State Theatre’s schedule: comedian Brian Regan on April 29, and rock group Saves the Day on May 4. –by CelebrityAccess Staff Writers