More Tonawanda Troubles

The problems surrounding an outdoor concert series near Niagara, N.Y., that lost its liquor license and major sponsor last summer aren’t over yet, as a band has sued the promoter of the series for failing to pay up.

Dark Star Orchestra filed suit in New York State Supreme Court against promoter Concerts Plus for the $25,000 it says it was owed for an Aug. 2 show in the city of Tonawanda’s Gateway Park, according to the Buffalo News.

What was called the Labatt Blue Light Concert Series ran throughout the summer at the park until underage police decoys were served alcohol during a July 26 show, the paper said.

State Liquor Authorities revoked the promoter’s alcohol permits in the middle of the Dark Star Orchestra show and Labatt pulled support soon after.

Following the show, Vincent Lesh of Concerts Plus explained in a statement that he had no choice but to cancel the rest of the series.

“Unfortunately, due to the massive financial loss incurred at the August 2 concert, our main sponsor pulling out of the series, and no beer permit in hand, we have been left with no other option except cancellation,” Lesh said.

According to court documents obtained by the News, Dark Star Orchestra is also seeking $5,000 for collection fees and attorney’s fees.

“The defendant has not responded, not answered,” DSO attorney Robert Boehm told the paper. “It’s a default situation.”
Lesh however, told the paper he had people “working on it,” and that he’d failed to respond because he’d moved offices and mail had gotten lost.

“We want to take care of Dark Star Orchestra,” he said. “They’re a band we’ve worked with before. … I’m trying to restore my relationship. I’ve been in the entertainment business for 25 years. To get wiped out in one night, that’s pretty much a disaster.”