(NewsNation) — Comedian Dave Chappelle was supposed to perform at First Avenue theatre in Minneapolis Wednesday night but hours before the show, the venue canceled the performance.
Chappelle’s Emmy-nominated standup special “The Closer” has come under fire from some in the LGBTQ community who believe some of his jokes delivered in the special were transphobic.
Since then, Chappelle has been a point of controversy for bookings as his shows usually come with protests from the trans community and its allies.
“I believe we that we have a right to say what we want or need to say, however there’s consequences and we have to be willing to live with the consequences that come with our free speech,” said Minneapolis City Council President Andrea Jenkins, a transgender woman.
First Avenue released a statement Wednesday night announcing Chappelle’s show had been canceled and would be instead held at the Varsity Theatre in town.
“To staff, artists and our community, we hear you and we are sorry,” a statement from First Avenue said. “We believe in diverse voices and 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 give feedback.”
Protesters gathered outside the venue, voicing their anger about Chappelle’s appearance, according to The Minneapolis Star-Tribune.
Chappelle fans were screamed at, and one was even hit by an egg while waiting in line for Chappelle’s show, according to the Star-Tribune’s reporting. Chapelle’s show at the Varsity Theatre sold out within five minutes of being announced.