Loring Theater financially troubled, but still open

Editor’s Note: I called the Loring Theater last week for an interview when I heard they were cancelling shows, but have yet to hear back from the staff. FYI, Steve Barberio was also a major player in the power shift at the Southern Theater a few years back. Under his management, both venues came out swinging with very dynamic seasons, but weren’t able to build a financial base to support them.

Update 11:44am: Steve Barberio e-mailed me this morning to make a clarification about his role in Southern’s programming:

“I did not select any content while on contract with the Southern and the financial difficulties preceded me by several years and extended well beyond my tenure. All content was selected by Jeff Bartlett and my contract ended six weeks after Jeff left. He had put together all content for that upcoming season.”

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – The newly rechristened Loring Theater in Minneapolis has canceled some shows and relocated others but remains open.

Managing partner Steve Barberio says the 440-seat theater still plans to put on a half-dozen events this year.

Barberio says the Loring is not getting the attendance it needs in the tough economy. But he adds, “We’re not closing the doors.”

The jewel-box theater on Nicollet Avenue South formerly was the Music Box Theatre, longtime home of the comedy hit “Triple Espresso.”

Last January it was renamed to its original name, the Loring Theater. Barberio says the intent was to create a variety theater, with music, movies and theatrical shows.

Barberio says the theater has cut back staff but still has six permanent staff members.

The Loring opened in 1920.

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