Concert simulcast viewers rock a little too hard in Batavia

Posted6/25/2010 12:01 AM

Bet this doesn't happen when they show "La Boheme" next month.

Batavia police were called to restore order at the IMAX theater at the Randall 15 movie theater Tuesday when patrons got out of hand during a broadcast of a thrash-metal rock concert. The theater is at 550 N. Randall Road.


Theater management called police about 11:21 p.m. The broadcast, originating from the Sonisphere Festival tour stop in Sonia, Bulgaria, had started about 7:30 p.m.

The bands featured were Anthrax, Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer.

Patrons had broken at least one seat, broke armrests on others, and put a small hole in the screen, according to Batavia police. Theater managers told officers the people were drinking alcohol and illicitly videotaping the broadcast. Officers reported seeing "a large amount" of alcohol beverage containers, according to Deputy Chief Greg Thrun.

Police stopped the broadcast and told everyone to leave. Once the showgoers were outside the building, they were given refunds.

No one was arrested. The theater is still able to show movies on the big screen, according to manager Melissa Recar. "It was a small disturbance ... things happen," she said. "Nothing major."

The simulcast was shown at theaters nationwide.

A writer on one Internet forum predicted there could be trouble: "I am not sure how this will come across in a movie theater setting. Will there be some cranked out dudes starting a pit??? Can you get some meth at the snack bar? Do you just sit there quietly and listen to 'Angel of Death' from Slayer?" wrote atomicpunk5151 in a forum at, a website devoted to musician David Lee Roth.

The IMAX theater opened in 2006. The 300-seat theater has hosted showings of films and simulcasts including Metropolitan Opera productions. It is scheduled to show a simulcast summary of Eric Clapton's Crossroads 2010 festival in July. "La Boheme" will be screened July 14 and 15, as part of the "The Met: Live in HD 'Summer Encores' " series.