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Springfield's Gillioz Theatre Faces Financial Woes

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- The Gillioz Theatre has faced financial woes before and could be in trouble again.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- The Gillioz Theatre has faced financial woes before and could be in trouble again.

It's a venue that's popular with downtown concert-goers.

"Besides being a really nice venue to see live music, it's nice to have a historic theater like that still downtown -- still operating, renovated again. It's just a really nice place to see a show," Evan Rogers said.

But the property, which is part of the Netters-Gillioz building along the 300-block of Park Central East, could be put to auction this month.

The theater is owned and operated by nonprofit Springfield Landmarks Preservation Trust. The group was notified recently that Guaranty Bank elected to call the mortgage on the property.

Landmarks Preservation Trust Board President Philip Rothschild, who also serves as the director of the entertainment management program at Missouri State University, released a statement to KOLR 10 News, saying his board is working to avoid an auction.

"We are currently in talks with Guaranty Bank and cannot comment at this time about ongoing negotiations, or what led to this decision. As a Board we are confident we will come to an agreement that will satisfy all parties. The Gillioz Theatre continues to do business-as-usual with a slate of great concerts and programs for our community," Rothschild said in the statement. 

The auction could happen Nov. 15 if a deal isn't reached, but many people downtown said they enjoy the entertainment that the venue brings.

"It's a really cool atmosphere because of how close the crowd is to the stage, and you really just get a great feel for whoever is performing when you're there," Taylor Moore said.

"There's a huge variety of different things that they have there. I've gone to concerts and plays and there's a comedy show that's filmed there. It would be a shame to have it auctioned off because a lot of people use it. It's a great venue," Kandi Wilson said.

The Gillioz Theatre filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy in 2010. At that time, nearly $200,000 were raised to save it. The historic theater reopened in 2006 after an extensive $9 million renovation.

The theater is scheduled to host several upcoming events, including concerts by O.A.R. and Switchfoot and comedy performances featuring Kathleen Madigan and Drew Carey.
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