It's the day after an important court hearing that left the homeless leaving many wondering, what's next?
The theater's landlord, Golden Coast of Sarasota, won a court Monday morning ruling to immediately evict the theater and its occupants, non-profit Professional Learning and Theatre Organization, Arts Sarasota's Jay Handelman reported.
Owner Robert Turhoff told Arts Sarasota that the financial situation has been dire over the last few years:
To pay off some outstanding debts, Turoff sold the building, but he also provided the new owners with $250,000 of his own, in what is called a “purchase money mortgage” to help the buyers take over the property, adjacent to the Sarasota Opera House.
Turoff said that last summer, a typically slow time at the theater, the landlord allowed the Golden Apple to pay half of each month’s $15,000 rent with the rest taken out of that $250,000 mortgage.
“They wouldn’t allow us to do the same thing this summer,” he said. “If we had been able to do that, we wouldn’t be in this situation.” The August fire didn’t help, and the theater is still waiting to recoup money from its insurance policy.
Now, the 42-year-old theater's doors' locks are changed, and the money they have are due to other obligations, Golden Coast attorney Charles Barteltt told WWSB.
The theater attempted to arrange a deal to have McCurdy's Comedy Theatre share the venue's space along with PLATO, but it didn't come soon enough, Roberta Turoff told WWSB.
The Turoff could form a new lease but it would be difficult, WWSB's Linda Carson reported on air.
So, Sarasota, there are few issues at hand now that we'd like to hear your suggestions for in the comments:
Where should the Golden Apple Dinner go to find a home?
Where will the actors and employees find work?
The Golden Apple already reformed as non-profit this summer to help with its finances. Would you suggest additional restructuring or approaches to its dinner theater for the Golden Apple to be financially viable?
What should go inside the Golden Apple building if the theater cannot return?