Comedian Dave Chappelle, who is set to have a theater named after him at his alma mater, has said people can still influence whether he receives the honor by raising money for the institution and stating whether they are for or against the idea.
Chappelle, who was heckled this week while addressing pupils at his old school, the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington D.C., posted news of his ‘donation challenge’ on his Instagram account.
His challenge comes after the comedian was heckled by some students who were unhappy about his controversial Netflix special.
Dave Chappelle has said urged people to donate to his alma mater stating whether they are in favor or against the naming of a theater after him
The comedian wants to raise money either in favor or objecting to a building on the campus of Duke Ellington School of the Arts bearing his name
Chappelle was heckled on Tuesday by students while visiting his old school
Chappelle is urging people to donate in favor or against his alma mater’s theater being named after him
Chappelle said that he will gladly step aside once the public have had their say by donating
‘Talk is cheap (Unless I do it). The Duke Ellington school is a glorious institution. Within those walls I found a context to explore my creativity seriously. Duke Ellington, in large part, prepared me to undertake this noble and difficult profession. It was a fine institution before any of it’s current occupants got there. God willing, it will be a fine institution long after their tenure is done. My only intent is to insure Duke Elling the opportunity to train its artists unfettered,’ Chappelle began in a statement spread over four pictures.
‘Having the theater named after me is a great honor. Although, that was not my idea, aim or desire. At the request of our beloved school’s founder, Peggy Cooper Kafritz, I accepted,’ he continued.
‘In April, I intend to honor that request. If you object to my receiving this honor, I urge you to donate to the school noting your objection. If you are in favor of the theater being named ‘Chappelle’, I urge you to donate to the school, noting your approval.
‘Whichever opinion donates the highest collective dollar amount, wins. If by April, those against the ‘Chappelle’ theater exceed the donations of those who are neutral or in favor of the theater being named ‘Chappelle’, I will gladly steal aside. If not, I will happily attend the naming ceremony. And if you don’t care enough to donate… please shut the f**k up, forever. – Dave’
Comedian Dave Chappelle (pictured) was heckled this week while addressing pupils at his old school, the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington DC, with some audience members complaining about his controversial Netflix special The Closer
Chappelle has been under fire this year over jokes about transgender people in his comedy special The Closer – but the comedian has always denied being anti-trans.
During The Closer, he made one comment stating that ‘gender is a fact’, leading to the trans community blasting the comedy special.
The controversial show caused Netflix staff to protest and mass outrage on social media against some of his jokes.
Stopping by his old school on Tuesday, Politico Playbook reports that during an address to some 580 students, one member of the audience questioned the comedian about his jokes.
The pupil reportedly said to Chappelle: ‘I’m 16 and I think you’re childish, you handled it like a child.’
The same student also reportedly described Chappelle as a ‘bigot’.
And responding to that pupil, Chappelle said that ‘with all due respect’, he didn’t believe that the pupil could make any of the daily decisions he himself has to make.
Stopping by his old school (pictured) on Tuesday, he delivered an address to some 580 students, and one member of the audience questioned the comedian about his jokes, describing him as ‘childish’ and a ‘bigot’
Students are pictured gather ingto welcome Duke Ellington School of the Arts alum, Dave Chappelle, to the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in an earlier encounter in September 2017
Chappelle also reportedly told one student ‘N***** are killed every day’, after the audience member yelled out that ‘your comedy kills’.
The school had originally delayed his appearance from November 23 to April 22 over fears that students may stage a walk-out protest, before going back on this plan.
Chappelle’s spokeswoman Carla Sims told Politico that ‘They are complaining that he talked and said the n-word. If anything, Dave is putting the school on the map.’
And a school official confirmed that the comments directed at Chappelle during his appearance had in fact been encouraged by the comedian, who asked those who had taken issue with his comedy to question him.
During his visit at the school, Chappelle also gave three students tickets to his ‘Untitled’ documentary and provided 600 meals for pupils and staff for Thanksgiving.
MailOnline has approached Dave Chappelle’s representatives for additional comment.
It comes after Chappelle was recently nominated for a Grammy Award despite facing backlash for his comments on transgender people in his Netflix special, The Closer.
The Grammy nominations come just one month after Chappelle faced calls to be canceled over jokes made in the stand-up special which was almost entirely centered around members of the LGBTQ community.
Critics are questioning cancel culture after Marilyn Manson, Dave Chappelle (pictured) and Louis C.K. were nominated for Grammy Awards despite having previously been ‘cancelled’
The comedian courted controversy with his jokes in which he asserts ‘gender is a fact,’ and criticizes what he says is the thin skin of the trans community.
The jokes were based upon earlier observations made by Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling‘s who in 2019 stated that transgender women were not actually women and were a threat to her identity.
His Grammy nomination is for the Netflix special, 8:46, in the best spoken word album category.
In the wake of the backlash, LGBTQ activists slammed Chappelle for his jokes about the trans community and transgender employees at Netflix staged a walkout to protest the streaming service for airing the special.
Several social media users applauded the nominations, mocking cancel culture – or rather the lack thereof
Chappelle’s upcoming documentary was also pulled by distributors and invites to film festivals were rescinded.
Last month, responding to backlash over The Closer, Chappelle posted a one-minute video posted to Instagram, saying: ‘To the transgender community, I am more than willing to give you an audience, but you will not summon me. I am not bending to anyone’s demands, and if you want to meet with me, I am more than willing to, but I have some conditions…’
‘First of all, you cannot come if you have not watched my special from beginning to end. You must come to a place of my choosing at a time of my choosing, and thirdly, you must admit that Hannah Gadsby is not funny.
‘Am I cancelled or not? Then let’s go!’ Chappelle yelled at the end of the video.