If there’s one thing that Dave Chappelle loves more than Joe Rogan and pissing off members of the LGBTQ+ community, it’s Dave Chappelle. So when his alma mater, Washington D.C.’s Duke Ellington School of the Performing Arts, made arrangements to name the school’s theater space after him, you’d think that Dave would’ve enthusiastically accepted the honor from a front-row, years-old gum-crusted theater seat that has “Kip $wallows whole hot dawg$” carved into it to bask in the glow of his greatness. But after the fallout from Dave’s comments about trans people in his last Netflix special, paired with his last uncomfortable visit to the school, Dave decided that he doesn’t want his name on the theater, after all, if it’s going to continue to make waves among the students.
The theater was supposed to be dedicated to him during his most recent stop at the school, but Dave instead basically “skeet-skeet-skeeted” all over that plan. Via NBC News:
The standup comedian made his opinion on the matter public Monday night while he was visiting Washington, D.C. for a dedication ceremony of the venue at Duke Ellington School of the Arts, his alma mater…while Chappelle reaffirmed that he believed criticisms against him weren’t productive, he also stated that he didn’t want his name to be on the theater if that would distract students.
Those criticisms stem from that time last year when he made a stop at the school the day before Thanksgiving, fresh off of his Netflix special dropping, and decided to roast the teenagers there who spoke up about his comments instead of roasting turkeys, which would have been an easy, drama free, and seasonally appropriate way to pass the time.
Instead of the student theater bearing his name, the space will instead be called the Theater for Artistic Freedom and Expression. Chappelle remains one of Duke Ellington’s most prolific donors and supporters, having given several millions of dollars to the institution, appeared for commencement speeches and hosted masterclasses for students. He had described the initial decision to name the theater after him as “the most significant honor of my life.”
Are we sure that he wasn’t just upset that they weren’t naming the whole school after him? In any case, just keep sending the money, STOP VISITING, and remain in the shadows–because dealing with the youths isn’t in your wheelhouse, Dave. Also though, “Theater for Artistic Freedom and Expression?” Yawn. The least he could have done is come up with something with a little more pizazz like “The Dave Chappelle Theater For Children Who Can’t Shut Up and Want To Learn To Avoid Accountability Too” or “The Pernicious Peckerhead Playhouse.”