Both supporters and critics of Dave Chappelle flooded social media sites with comments Friday, after he was heckled at a show in Connecticut and refused to perform his set. The comedian was the headliner Thursday night at the Funny or Die Presents The Oddball Comedy & Curiosity Festival, which is touring the country.
Fans said Chappelle came out and told a few jokes but stopped because of the heckling. Video posted online shows Chappelle over the next 25 or so minutes sitting on a stool on stage responding to the hecklers, joking about the situation and even reading the first few sentences of an audience member’s book. He was booed as he walked off the stage of the Comcast Theatre, and some fans demanded their money back.
Chappelle has had trouble with hecklers in the past, including in June when they interrupted his show in Knoxville, Tenn.
Chappelle on Thursday night blamed the hecklers for ruining the Hartford show. He noted his contract mandated that he be on stage for 25 minutes. “I don’t know what I’m supposed to say for 25 minutes,” he said.
Chappelle called his experience a nightmare and joked he was going back to television, “where it’s safe.”
“I like some of you. I hate some of you,” he said just before leaving the stage. “I forgive some of you, but I don’t forgive all of you. You guys have totally ruined my chances for running for Congress or something. … Thank you. Good night.”
O’Reilly acknowledges mistake
Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly has apologized for incorrectly stating that no Republicans were invited to participate in a ceremony this week marking the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for civil rights and Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.
In fact, Republican House Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Eric Cantor were invited but did not attend. Former President George W. Bush sent a statement in commemoration. O’Reilly had made the incorrect claim on Wednesday, the day of the ceremony.
“The mistake – entirely on me,” O’Reilly said on his show Thursday. “I simply assumed that since all the speakers were liberal Democrats, Republicans had been excluded. So here’s the tip of the day: Always check out the facts before you make a definitive statement and when you make a mistake, admit it.”
O’Reilly said the Republicans made a mistake, too. He said they should have been there.
The birthday bunch
Baseball Hall-of-Famer Frank Robinson is 78. Violinist Itzhak Perlman is 68. Singer Van Morrison is 68. Actor Richard Gere is 64. Olympic gold medal track and field athlete Edwin Moses is 58. Singer-composer Deborah Gibson is 43. Actor Chris Tucker is 41.