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Pilsen / UIC

Teatro is not always so classy…

Teatro is not always so classy...

Ristorante Al Teatro (Christine Harrell photo for RedEye)

In previous posts, I sang the praises of Ristorante Al Teatro’s pizza and drink selection for vegans.  I also liked that it was a classy alternative to greasy pizza joints and dime-a-dozen Mexican restaurants.  Well, “classy” compared to some of the other places in Pilsen.  I guess the decor is a little much.

Now I feel like a prize idiot.

I recently checked out the Pilsen hashtag on twitter.  Yes, I am a typical “millennial” and get the bulk of my news via tweet feeds.  Anyway, something’s up at Teatro.  Something very not-classy.

Like brawls in the street and the restaurant being used as a nightclub not-classy.  Like the owner getting hit with lawsuits not-classy.  Like the owner having millions of dollars yet asking the public to donate money so he can renovate Thalia Hall not-classy.

Is Teatro known by people in-the-know as a skeezy place?  How clueless am I?

Check out the comments on this article and this video showing patrons leaving Teatro on a late night in September.  I know there are two sides to every story, but maybe I won’t be buying any pizza from there for awhile…

Got any other news on Thalia Hall or Teatro?  Share here or tweet me @CMarieHarrell.

 


6 Responses to Teatro is not always so classy…

  1. Katrina Walker

    Numerous articles have been written about Dominick Geraci’s fraud and thefts. (The Chicago Reader article is pretty exhaustive but doesn’t cover everything. http://bit.ly/cZaiqE)

    Dominick Geraci obtained the Thalia Hall building through a series of financial frauds for which he is currently being sued in Cook County Circuit Court. He was originally sued in federal court, but because his scheme had ended and was not ongoing, insofar as those exact plaintiffs were concerned, it had to be refiled in Cook County. Add Geraci dodging the process server for months on end and you have a court case that is only now (late 2011) heating up.

    Among other allegations, Geraci is being sued to return the Thalia Hall building, the money he stole from the former company that owned Thalia (of which he was a partner), and damages.

    A Cook County Court search shows he is also being sued by the media company that publishes CS magazine. Recently, a bank filed a foreclosure on a property that he purchased in order to take part in a TIF windfall with his dear departed lobbyist crony Phil Krone. The TIF may or may not have materialized. (I don’t keep track of these things anymore.)

    The Thalia Hall Fraud case is here: http://bit.ly/nLQHNK

    The TIF property foreclosure here: http://bit.ly/vVc8td

    The Chicago Social case here: http://bit.ly/rzjrD0

    Dominick Geraci has no shame –the fraud, the stealing, the boorish behavior, etc, are old news — but to now ask the public to DONATE money to him so he can renovate the theater is a new level of absurdity.

    Geraci promises to put on art exhibits and plays if you give him — a suburban, multi millionaire real estate developer — money to fix up (and increase the value of) his own property! How generous of him!

    From Deborah Bayliss’ puff-piece about Ristorante al Teatro’s gallant Sicilian owner,

    “A fundraiser for the theater restoration is scheduled for 6 to 10 p.m. Jan 28 at the restaurant.

    For ticket information, please call (312) 784-9100.”

    Seems to me like Dominick Geraci needs a legal defense fund!

    Thank you, Christine Harrell, for being more of a journalist that most of the hacks out there who fail to google “Thalia Hall” or “Dominick Geraci” or are likely taking kickbacks.

    More to come.

  2. Joe

    The man is crooked as hell. Do not eat here and do not rent from him, he’s a slumlord, cheap cheap cheap!! Hope they go out of business, the night club is trashy and attacks the WRONG crowd. Get out of Pilsen, get out of Chicago!

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