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Egyptian Theatre Can't Get A Break

Why Boise Lost Greg Brown to Nampa

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When Greg Brown takes the stage for his concert this week, he'll do so without devoted fan Share Maack. The Boise resident and her five out-of-town friends were all set to see the famous folkie play a show at the Egyptian Theatre, until they heard the concert was getting moved to the Nampa Civic Center.

"The whole point was to be in downtown and see the show," Maack said. But Nampa? Forget it. She returned her tickets.

It's a sad story for the Egyptian, which is contractually obligated to show more first-run, but not necessarily top-of-the-line, films like Nacho Libre and Cars instead.

"It was nothing the Egyptian wanted to do," said Bob Overand, the concert promoter who got Brown to town, only to have to do a last-minute shuffle. Now Overand is guessing he'll lose money on the deal.

"Am I happy about it? No. For me to move a show, it costs me money," Overand said. "We've struggled with this."

So has Marvin Scifres, the manager of the Egyptian, who is forced to run a film instead of hosting the popular concert.

"It was just one of those things," Scifres said.

The unspoken subtext here is the Egyptian's rocky relationship with the Edwards Cinema complex that has moved into the BoDo neighborhood just a few blocks away. Already The Egyptian has had to give up on running some popular films--Harry Potter fans still recall how the fourth film in that series screened at the Edwards theater instead of the Egyptian, as the three previous ones had.

But neither Scifres nor Overand is talking about the Edwards effect. Instead, both men say they look forward to better scheduling, and more concerts, at the venerable downtown establishment.