Friday, January 25, 2008

Dancap Takes Over Toronto Theatre

Not yet two shows under his theatrical belt, and Aubrey Dan is already managing the Canon and Panasonic Theatres in Toronto, and Broadway Across America, which tours in 42 U. S. cities and 20 Canadian cities. Both were part of a $61 million acquisition of Live Nation Inc. by Key Brand Entertainment, in which Dan is a primary investor.

Michael Posner provides the details at the Globe and Mail:

"Mr. Dan, 44, is in the first year of marketing a six-show subscription series in Toronto under the umbrella of Dancap Productions. In an interview, he said that through his investment company, Dancap Private Equity, he is taking an equity position 'north of 10 per cent and south of 15 per cent' in Key Brand, an investment company dedicated to development, production and distribution of live theatre. In return, he will manage its Canadian assets, including Broadway Across Canada, the Canon and Panasonic Theatres, and will sit on Key Brand's board of directors."

What does this mean for Mirvish Productions, which holds a lease at the Canon until 2016?

According to Dan's interview with Richard Ouzounian, there won't be a challenge to the contract. (We Will Rock You [2007] is free to continue its run as scheduled through 2010.)

"'I see this as a wonderful opportunity for the two of us to work together,' [Dan said]. 'I have the greatest respect for the Mirvishes and applaud the chance for synergy. We welcome them with open arms.'

"David Mirvish was similarly optimistic in a statement. 'I, too, think of it as business as usual and I look forward to meeting with Aubrey.'

"The acquisitions won't affect Dan's plans for the renamed Toronto Centre for the Arts in North York, where he'll present My Fair Lady [2008] and Jersey Boys [2008] this summer.

"All in all, it was quite a day for Dan, who on Tuesday opens The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee [2008] musical at the Elgin, only his second solo show in Toronto."

"The first was The Drowsy Chaperon[e (2007, tour)] last fall, also at the Elgin.

"'Not bad for a young start-up company,' he laughs."

Not bad at all.

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