Three months after Main Street Arts closed its doors for good, parents and businesses are still waiting for money they say is owed to them for classes, instruments and rent.
Jordan Malmed of Cross River placed a flute and trombone on consignment with Bramson's Music when it was still located in Mt. Kisco. After reading the he visited the Yellow Monkey Village in Cross River, where Main Street Arts founder John Burton had moved the music store's inventory after purchasing the business.
"There were no sign of any instruments there," said Malmed, who visited the location several times early this year, hoping to recover his property. "These belonged to my little girl. We are not a wealthy family that can shrug away the loss of these instruments that are worth $2,000."
Burton announced in December that the organization he founded with Paul Perez, Main Street Arts Children's Theatre, and —would terminate operations in Feb. 2012.
At the time, Burton and Perez expressed disappointment that their vision would not be realized. The failure of their vision included the closing of Bramson's, a 50-year old music business, and Encore Dance, both purchased by Main Street Arts in 2011.
Many families sought refunds for Encore dance classes that were suspended then re-located from Mt. Kisco to Bedford Hills. Lenore Pauline, mother of an 8-year-old dancer asked for a partial refund of the $1,147.20 she paid for six months of classes that lasted two months. Along with Susan Hoffman, another dance parent, she has not yet received any refund.
Local resident Amy Silverman was also affected by the Bramson's fallout, with a store gift certificate in hand but nowhere to spend it.
One individual Patch interviewed for its first story on MSACT, Gina Picinich, will not be needing that email. She said she received her refund on Dec. 19, delivered by Burton personally.
At least three lawsuits filed against MSACT are still pending, according to attorneys.
Steven Waldinger represents which filed a claim for $125,920 in back rent from when MSACT occupied space at their Bedford Hills studio. "We're expecting a judgement any day now," he told Patch.
Also pending is the suit brought by Barbara Ellen Bramson () alleges that Burton and Perez owe Bramson close to half a million dollars for the business, consulting fees and health insurance premiums for Bramson and her husband.
In addition, Carrie Tron of filed a lawsuit in January against John Burton over ownership of the Bedford Hills-based dance studio. Burton said in December he had purchased the business but Tron then disputed the validity of the contract. Tron, through her attorney, Elizabeth Rockelle, said she could not comment because of the pending litigation.
Burton did not reply to Patch's repeated outreach.
Perez, now executive director of the Eclipse Theatre Company in Mt. Kisco, was also not immediately available for comment.