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Dave Chappelle has mocked protestors who forced him to relocate his sold-out Minneapolis show.
Hours before the comedian’s scheduled gig at First Avenue on Thursday (21 July), organisers announced on Instagram that it had been cancelled and moved to Varsity Theatre, citing backlash over Chappelle’s allegedly transphobic jokes.
“To staff, artists and our community, we hear you and we are sorry,” the statement began.
“We know we must hold ourselves to the highest standards, and we know we let you down. We are not just a black box with people in it, and we understand that First Ave is not just a room, but meaningful beyond our walls.”
According to the Daily Mail, who attended the relocated show, Chappelle took the stage, criticising those who tried to cancel him.
“Comedy is just comedy,” he said as he entered the stage. “I’d respect them more if there was at least one Black person!”
Chappelle further joked about cancel culture and his ongoing challenge with pronouns, noting that he found it confusing “when the reproductive system is made out of words and semantics”.
Following the release of Chappelle’s Netflix special The Closer in October last year, the comedian was criticised for a number of allegedly transphobic comments he made during the show, including that he was “team Terf” (trans-exclusionary radical feminist), and that the LGBT+ community was attempting to destroy the lives of celebrities such as JK Rowling by “cancelling” them.
However, the Television Academy deemed the special worthy of an Emmy nomination earlier this month, recognising The Closer in the Outstanding Variety Special category.