FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
San Francisco, CA
October 9, 2019
Mezzanine SF Owner Files for Chapter 11 Protection
Storied music and entertainment venue Mezzanine SF, owned by Nightgallerie, LLC, today announced it had filed a voluntary petition for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of California, San Francisco Division. The company intends to use the court-supervised restructuring process to support and protect its fall and holiday season slate of live music and corporate party events; to provide an ongoing, efficient and orderly mechanism for supporting its staff, patrons and vendors and for resolving its debt obligations; and to preserve an opportunity for the 16 year-old venue to survive and thrive into the future as a hub for San Francisco cultural events.
Deborah Jackman, owner and manager of 12,000 square foot, 1000-person
capacity space located off Mint Plaza in the Central Market/SoMa neighborhood, says the company “will do whatever it takes to preserve a heartbeat of San Francisco nightlife during a time when smaller to medium-sized, independently owned event venues are being forced out” of the city. The Chapter 11 filing “will allow us time to reorganize our financial obligations while continuing to host live music and corporate events through the fall and into the holiday season, and hopefully well into the future.”
Under Chapter 11, Mezzanine’s business operations will continue as usual and its full lineup of fall and holiday performances and corporate events will proceed as planned, uninterrupted.
Brothers Dave, Todd and Scott Chritton own the building housing Mezzanine and operate a tech security business out of its basement. Mezzanine’s sublease with Chrittons expires October 10, 2019. (Mezzanine founder Patrick McNerney, through an entity, is the master tenant on the Chritton lease.) The Chrittons told Jackman in November 2018 through their commercial real estate broker that the lease would not be extended beyond
its October 2019 expiration. But after public outcry over the impending closure of yet another San Francisco cultural staple, Jackman received a letter of intent from the Chrittons in January 2019 ensuring that Mezzanine would be allowed to remain open through January 31, 2020 -- with the possibility of negotiating a long-term lease. With that promise, Jackman and her staff continued to book shows and other events through the end of 2019.
But on May 1, 2019, Jackman says, “the rug was pulled out from under us.” At that time the Chrittons informed Jackman that its lease would not be extended after all. Since then, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors has become involved, voting unanimously in July 2019 to place interim zoning controls on the entire South of Market district to restrict landlords from changing the use of their property from Nighttime Entertainment use to any non-entertainment use.
Owner Jackman says, “our hope is that through Chapter 11 we can preserve
Mezzanine’s operations and position the company to provide great live music events in the heart of the city for years to come,” through Nightgallerie or some other entity committed to the continued cultural vitality of San Francisco.
Legal counsel representing Nightgallerie/Mezzanine in the Chapter 11 process are restructuring attorney James Shepherd of Walnut Creek and litigation/corporate attorney Mark Rennie of San Francisco.
About Nightgallerie, LLC - Mezzanine SF
Nightgallerie, LLC dba Mezzanine SF, owned and managed by Deborah Jackman, is one of the largest woman-owned music venues in the United States. Since opening its doors in 2003, Mezzanine has hosted underground/local talent along with major music acts like Lady Gaga (twice), LCD Soundsystem, Snoop Dogg, Florence + the Machine and Green Day, plus popular parties such as Hard French and Dirtybird Quarterly as well as exciting music and holiday events for local and multinational companies. Mezzanine also helped usher in the revitalization of San Francisco’s Mint Plaza through club founder Patrick McNerney.