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Colonial Theatre Could Open Oct 24 With Show for Elizabeth Warren

Boston’s Colonial Theatre is talking about reopening its doors, reports The Boston Globe.

According to Josiah A. Spaulding Jr., Chief Executive Officer of the Citi Performing Arts Center, the Center has requested an entertainment license from the city, in order for the Theatre to resume business.

The Colonial Theatre was closed in July 2011 after negotiations between the theater’s owner and Broadway in Boston didn’t pan out, reports the Boston Herald.

Emerson College is currently the owner of the theater. Back in 2003, the college entered into a 20 year lease, with an option to purchase the theater. Subsequently, Emerson exercised an option to purchase that was in the lease and they bought the property in 2006, with plans to use the top nine floors as dorms, according to Boston Business Journal.

The Citi Performing Arts Center has now entered into a three year lease with Emerson, after the ten-year lease from the prior tenant was not renewed.

Commercial leases are complicated and this one even more so. While the 1,700 seat theater is owned by a college, its use has been largely theatrical, with several Broadway shows making their Boston mark at the Colonial.

As such, there would likely be use restrictions in the lease, with possible contingencies that Citi obtain the necessary licensing from the city.

The current lease provides for a partnership between Citi and Broadway in Boston. While the Citi Performing Arts Center will be leasing the property, many of its shows will be done in collaboration with Broadway in Boston.

Broadway in Boston will be able to use the theater for its shows, without the added responsibility of serving as the lease operator.

The Citi Performing Arts Center hopes to open its doors on October 24, with its first show being a James Taylor concert in support of Senatorial candidate Elizabeth Warren.

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