After only a few hours, Dave Chappelle’s stand-up gig in Minneapolis, Minn., was canceled.
First Avenue, the historic venue where Prince’s “Purple Rain” was filmed, stated that the performance will be relocating to Varsity Theater instead of its current location on First Avenue. Following Chappelle’s Netflix special “The Closer,” which attracted attention for its transphobic jokes, the venue took to Instagram to address the social media reaction they had received.
Please know that we hear and are sorry to the members of our team, artists, and the broader community. We recognize that we have failed you, and we apologize for our mistakes. Statement: “We are not simply a black box with people in it, and we recognize that First Ave is not just a space, but important beyond our borders,” the statement continues.
I know you have worked hard to make our venues the safest places in the nation, and we will maintain that effort.” We respect the right of free speech and creative expression, but in doing so, we overlooked the potential consequences.”
There were a lot of negative comments on First Avenue’s social media when they announced Chappelle’s event earlier this week, but TMZ claimed that the tickets swiftly sold out. It’s “disgusting” that “homophobic or transphobic language will not be accepted,” says one remark on the venue’s Facebook page for Dave Chappelle’s show.
With the addition of two extra performances on July 21 and 22, Varsity Theater in Dinkytown will host Wednesday’s program.
In a recent lecture at his alma college, Chappelle again justified his jokes by citing creative liberty. It was revealed that Chappelle had opted against having a theater at the school named after him, preferring to rename it the Theater for Artistic Freedom and Expression. ‘What’s in a Name?’ A discussion with kids at the school led to the decision, Chappelle said, citing their criticism of his words in “The Closer.”
My heart broke when I heard those talking points coming out of those children’s lips. Because I’m sure those terms weren’t invented by those young people. Those are words I’ve heard before. When someone says I can’t say something, “the more vital it is for me to speak it,” Chappelle stated. In addition, I’m unable to say anything about what you’re saying.”
It’s all about my right to express myself via art. That’s a big deal for me. That is not a part of me that has been cut off. Our great, noble professions are worth maintaining for me and for everyone else who pursues them.”
Chappelle Became Frustrated When Stand-up Audience Members Yelled Scenes From the Show
Chappelle notoriously informed an audience in 2004 that they were “dumb” for yelling “I’m Rick James, b*tch” as he was attempting to do stand-up comedy, and he also warned the crowd that the performance was wrecking his life. Chappelle’s comments gained widespread notoriety. Later on, Chappelle is said to have walked away from a deal for an estimated $50 million before going to Africa to recharge his batteries.
In an interview with Oprah in 2006, Chappelle said that he believed individuals around him were manipulating him. “I thought that in a lot of situations I was being purposely put through stress because when you’re a person who creates money, people have a vested interest in controlling you,” he said.
“It’s because when you’re a guy who generates money, people have a vested interest in controlling you.” He disclosed his intentions to Comedy Central, stating that he wanted to renegotiate the arrangement and donate his wealth to charitable causes. Instead, the network showed a condensed version of the third season of “lost episodes,” which was hosted by Rawlings and Charlie Murphy and included material that had already been produced.