The owners of Vina Robles Amphitheatre in Paso Robles, Calif., have settled with former general manager Tim Reed, who sued in March 2016 saying he was wrongfully terminated and that he lost shares of the business he was promised.
“I am very pleased that the ownership and management at Vina Robles chose to resolve our differences,” Reed, who is now Knitting Factory Entertainment director of production, told Pollstar in a statement Aug 21. The venue is owned by Vina Robles Inc., which has denied Reed’s claims.
A Vina Robles Amphitheatre representative confirmed to Pollstar that the case has been settled, which was scheduled to go to trial in October. Financial terms were not disclosed.
“Although it may appear to an outsider that the amphitheatre popped up overnight in 2013, it was actually a 20-year effort that came at significant personal costs,” Reed stated, adding that he oversaw construction, design and the grand opening of the 3,300-capacity venue on California’s central coast. “I lost jobs over it. I lost friends over it and it took years from my life. In the end, it was worthwhile to be able to give this gift to the people and the County of San Luis Obispo.”
Reed in his suit alleged he was wrongfully terminated days after the end of the venue’s first concert season and that he lost shares of the business he was promised in exchange for below-market yearly wages. His suit alleged breach of fiduciary duty, breach of both written and oral contract, fraud, and unfair business practices.
Reed was fired Oct. 17, 2014, based on violations of the employee handbook, the lawsuit states according to the local San Luis Obispo Tribune, which therefore “forfeited and canceled” Reed’s shares in the companies.
“The pursuit of an amphitheatre in San Luis Obispo County has been a primary component of my career in the concert and touring business,” Reed’s statement to Pollstar continues, adding that he’s completed build-outs of the Fillmore Auditorium in Denver, Toyota Amphitheatre in Wheatland, Calif., City Lights Pavilion in Denver and most recently Big Sky Brewing Co. Amphitheatre in Montana in 2017 with Knitting Factory.
“I am very grateful that, since 2015, I have once again been working with a real concert promotions company, a strong and independent one, at that,” Reed stated. “It is a luxury to work for people that understand the concert environment and conduct concerts and touring as a primary business.”
In February of 2014 Nederlander Concerts was named as exclusive booker for the venue, an agreement that was extended in January of this year, although the company is not an owner of the venue and was not involved in this case. Paul Leatherman is general manager of the venue., which has twice been nominated for best small outdoor venue at the Pollstar Awards.
Upcoming shows at Vina Robles include Alice in Chains, Los Lobos / The Mavericks, Kansas, Anjelah Johnson, Needtobreathe, and Sebastian Maniscalco, with recent shows from Jay Leno, #IMomSoHard, Ian Anderson, and Jeff Dunham, and Tony Bennett.