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Tower Theatre closes, might reopen soon

The Tower Theatre closed Friday after the city revoked its business license, but its manager hopes to reopen by the end of the month at the latest.

The Vanilla Ice concert on May 20 led to the temporary closure of the theater at 876 E. 900 South, manager Greg Tanner said."There was a near riot" at the concert, Tanner said. Neighbors complained, and on Thursday afternoon Tanner, the neighbors and Salt Lake police met to discuss ways to prevent future disturbances.

Once police learned the theater was not licensed to hold live performances, the Tower's business license was revoked Thursday afternoon, Tanner said.

Tanner immediately applied for a new permit to operate the theater solely as a movie house and video rental store.

"We want to get back to basics, which for us is offering alternatives to Hollywood movies," he said.

Tanner will meet with health and fire safety inspectors Monday to find out which, if any, improvements must be made before his new business license is approved.

"I think we're in fine shape," he said, and if no improvements are required, the theater will reopen early next week.

If the Tower does need some repairs, Tanner said he hopes to take care of them and reopen by the end of June. "Hideous Kinky," a Kate Winslet movie that screened at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival, will probably be the reopening feature, Tanner said.

The Tower also is in the middle of working out a way to catch up on the $12,000 in back rent it owes Harold Hill, the building's owner. Tanner has another Monday meeting scheduled, this one with Hill.

All concerts at the Tower have been canceled.