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Minneapolis Venue Apologizes For Booking Dave Chappelle In Powerful Message Canceling Show

Minneapolis Venue Apologizes For Booking Dave Chappelle In Powerful Message Canceling Show
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It's no secret that "big name" performers, artists and influencers often get away with more negative and harmful behaviors and comments, simply because they have an extensive following.

Some of their fans will undoubtedly be bigots or apologists.

Comedian Dave Chapelle is no exception, with an increasingly long history of problematic material, particularly targeting the trans community.

So for those who are against transphobia, it's disheartening when he is scheduled to appear at a venue.

On Monday, July 18, Minneapolis, Minnesota club First Avenue announced they would be hosting Dave Chapelle for a live performance.

Given his history of transphobic material, the community was not happy with the news.

Comments continued to pour in on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

The announcement tweet had nearly 500 comments before the opening of Chapelle's performance and nearly 300 retweets, many of them complaining about the collaboration.

First Avenue listened to the concerns that filled the Twitter thread and decided to make a surprise change to their performance schedule, just a few hours before Chapelle was expected to step onto the stage.

The venue tweeted the announcement:

"We hear you. Tonight's show has been canceled at First Avenue and is moving to the Varsity Theater."

You can read their full statement here:

"The Dave Chapelle show tonight at First Avenue has been canceled and is moving to the Varsity Theater."
"To staff, artists, and our community, we hear you and we are sorry. 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."
"The First Avenue team and you have worked hard to make our venues the safest spaces in the country, and we will continue with that mission."
"We believe in diverse voices and the freedom of artistic expression, but in honoring that, we lost sight of the impact this would have."
"We know there are some who will not agree with this decision; you are welcome to send feedback."
"If you are a ticket holder, look for an email with information on your ticket(s) transferring to the show at Varsity Theater."

Followers were proud of First Avenue for stepping up.

But some questioned First Avenue's commitment to diversity.

It's unclear if this is a movement that will continue across other venues, but First Avenue's stance was well-appreciated and noticed by the LGBTQ+ community and its allies.

Hopefully other large venues, like Netflix, who questionably supported a recently transphobic special from Chapelle, titled The Closer, would begin to step up as well.

It's time for performers and artists to be held accountable for their actions, whether they have a "big name" or not.