Calling it a matter of standing on principle and respecting their landlord, the leaders of NewSpace Entertainment announced Wednesday they will not submit a bid to run Sandy's Broadway-style theater.
    "This is certainly an existential question for us, but it's the right thing to do," said NewSpace President Steve Boulay.
    The decision comes during the middle of a theater joust between Salt Lake City and Sandy.
    Salt Lake City-based NewSpace, which manages a Broadway subscription series in downtown venues, argues all parties should wait for Salt Lake County's cultural facilities master plan, expected by late summer. A March 7 letter to NewSpace from county officials, including Mayor Peter Corroon, requested just that.
    But Sandy is soliciting production and management bids - including one from New York-based Nederlander Producing Company of America - for its 2,800-seat, $50 million playhouse planned for a 2011 opening in the suburb.
    The deadline for proposals is today, while Sandy hopes to sign its operator by July 1.
    A spokesman for Nederlander would not confirm whether the company is interested but said the opportunity "looks like a good one." Industry insiders suggest a powerhouse like Nederlander could put NewSpace out of business and Salt Lake City out of the running in the theater chase.
    Despite the threat, Boulay says it behooves everybody to respect the process established by the county, a neutral party.
    "It's important for this major investment in the community to have an open and intelligent discussion," he said. "A couple more months and more information can't hurt anybody."