Last week, West Bank theater Mixed Blood filed a $350,000 lawsuit against Prince's estate after being forced to cancel its benefit gala at Paisley Park.
Tickets went fast when it was announced earlier this year that Mixed Blood Theatre would host its annual fundraiser at Prince's Paisley Park on May 14. Around 1,000 revelers were expected to attend. But when Prince died on April 21 of an overdose, those plans began to unravel.
According to a press release that was sent out a few days after his death, Mixed Blood was originally assured by the estate that their plans to throw their gala onsite would be honored. By May 9, however, those plans had been dashed.
"We received news today, May 6, 2016, at 5pm that Bremer Trust, the court-appointed representative of Prince's estate, has decided to enforce a ban on all public events in Paisley Park for the time being, even those events already scheduled and under contract..." the cancelation release stated. "...With eight days remaining before the event, there is so little time to cancel or change flights, return the outfit you bought or rented, and manage the disappointment."
The theater hopes to recoup the costs incurred while planning the event, which raises crucial funds for the organization, that never occurred. Refunds were issued to ticket holders.
“This was the biggest thing we’d ever planned, and a great number of people had spent a year planning it,” artistic director Jack Reuler told the Star Tribune yesterday.
This year, Mixed Blood Theatre celebrated 40 years. Over the decades, the organization has produced original works, nurtured up-and-coming artists, supported works in progress, and offered free theater through its Radical Hospitality program.
There's no word yet on when the matter will be settled, but as familiy members, long-lost heirs, and other organizations have submitted claims, the estate surely has a lot to work out.