Bangerth Sorry For ‘Magnifico’

The managing director of the company that went bust producing German equine spectacular “Magnifico” says she feels sorry for anyone who lost out on its collapse.

“Yes, I feel very sorry for anybody who believed in this dream – for every artist, employee, investor, service provider, sponsor, and ticket buyer,” Julia Bangerth told Pollstar.

Last July, Magnifico Circus GmbH & Co. filed for insolvency at the district court in Munich.

The same court blocked the disposal of the company’s assets Oct. 1 because that wouldn’t raise enough to cover the costs of the sale.

Bangerth and global promoter Marcel Avram, who says his only involvement with “Magnifico” was “supervising the group of investors,” have not disclosed how much money the production owed.

“Obviously, being the investors’ representative and with my marketing tools and promotion experience, it was a must for me to help keep this show alive as long as I could,” Avram explained, apparently referring to his efforts to get ticketing giant CTS Eventim to come to the rescue.

At the time of the insolvency filing, Avram said his information indicated the show had “enough assets such as horses, costumes, production items, etcetera” to be sold to “pay back most of the outstanding amounts.”

Bangerth and Avram both blame the “Magnifico” disaster on Austrian show producer André Heller.

Bangerth says Heller, who had global success with “Afrika! Afrika!” “promised a lot and did not deliver a show as breathtaking as expected.”

Avram said Heller “puts the blame on others whenever one of his many shows fails.”

Figures that were made available suggest Heller had a budget of euro 5.5 million ($7.14 million) for the production but spent twice that amount.

The weekly running costs went up to $900,000, which Avram claimed made it “more expensive than any other worldwide show.”

Heller had earlier told German media it was Avram’s project and his fault it folded.

“Magnifico” premiered in Munich to good reviews but sold only 57,000 of 136,000 tickets.