Promoter Claims City Killed PEI Show

A San Jose, Calif., promoter in a legal battle with the city of Summerside, Prince Edward Island, over a failed Michael Jackson tribute concert has filed a motion to dismiss the city’s complaint and a motion for summary judgment.

Katrina Berg Sussmeier’s Starlink Productions was hit with the lawsuit in January, filed by Summerside in U.S. District Court in San Jose.

The complaint brought forth a number of charges including fraud and civil conspiracy to commit fraud, negligent misrepresentation and recission for the failed show, for which the city paid a $1.38 million deposit to secure artists including Beyoncé, Justin Timberlake, Usher, Ne-Yo and Leona Lewis.

In the motion to dismiss, attorneys for Sussmeier allege that the city breached its contract with Sussmeier and forfeited its right to recover the deposit, according to court documents.

“It is curious that the plaintiff seeks recission but fails to sue for breach of contract,” they wrote. “The reason for that is the plaintiff, in fact, is the party which breached the contract and has forfeited all rights to the monies deposited.”

Sussmeier and Co. claim the city violated a non-disclosure agreement by attempting to contact artists and their management during the negotiation process, which killed the deal.

“Defendants had been in contact with individuals associated with Beyoncé who advised that they could secure her appearance at the concert,” the motion states. “However, before such contact was made subsequent to the deposit being placed with the defendants, a contact was made with Beyoncé’s management demeaning defendants and the ability to stage a concert. As a result, Beyoncé did not agree to stage the concert.

“A person unknown from the city contacted Beyoncé’s staff with an email and killed the prospects of obtaining her services.”

A court date for the case is still forthcoming and the city has yet to respond to Starlink’s motion to dismiss.