Comedian Dave Chappelle announces fall dates for US comedy tour

Comedian Dave Chappelle is hitting the road this fall in a stand-up comedy tour called Dave Chappelle Live.

The news was reported exclusively on the July 25 episode of NBC's Today Show.

The tour, produced by Live Nation, kicks off in August with a pair of shows at Madison Square Garden in New York City and concludes in early October at the United Center in Chicago.

The tour includes stops in Detroit, New Orleans and Nashville, among other locations.

Local presale tickets will be available on July 26, while the general sale begins July 27 at 10 a.m. local time through Ticketmaster.

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Dave Chappelle's 'The Closer' controversy

Dave Chappelle came under fire in 2021 for his Netflix standup special "The Closer." The special provoked backlash due to his remarks about the LBGTQ+ community, in particular his focus on the transgender community.

In the special, Chappelle resurfaced a December 2019 controversy in which “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling drew backlash after conflating sex with gender and defending ideas suggesting that changing one's biological sex was a threat to her own gender identity.

Chappelle also attempted to paint a juxtaposition between the pace of civil rights gained by the LGBTQ community and those fought for by the Black community.

Netflix co-CEO Ted Sarandos defended his decision to keep the special on the streaming service amid internal criticism from company employees.

Dave Chappelle performs during a theater dedication ceremony honoring the comedian and actor, and to raise funds to support Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington, Monday, June. 20, 2022. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe) ORG XMIT: DCGA106
Dave Chappelle performs during a theater dedication ceremony honoring the comedian and actor, and to raise funds to support Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington, Monday, June. 20, 2022. (AP Photo/Gemunu Amarasinghe) ORG XMIT: DCGA106

Sarandos sent a staff memo at the time pledging Netflix's commitment to the special, citing Netflix's work in supporting their talent's creative freedom.

Sarandos' support of the special led to a walkout from a group of Netflix employees in 2021, a gesture that was amplified by emotional pleas from supporters of the walkout who rallied outside company headquarters.

The employees said company executives dismissed their concerns that Chappelle's comments in "The Closer" could lead to violence against the trans community.

At the time, two employees, one transgender and one non-binary, filed labor charges against the streaming giant alleging the company retaliated against them for speaking out aboutChappelle's special.

Hours before the walkout, Netflix shared a statement with USA TODAY: "We value our trans colleagues and allies, and understand the deep hurt that’s been caused. We respect the decision of any employee who chooses to walk out, and recognize we have much more work to do both within Netflix and in our content.”

"I want everyone in this audience to know that even though the media frames this that it's me versus that community, that is not what it is," Chappelle said in a 2021 Instagram clip. "Do not blame the LBGTQ (sic) community for any of this (expletive). This has nothing to do with them. It's about corporate interest, and what I can say, and what I cannot say."

"The Closer" received two Primetime Emmy nominations in 2022, including outstanding variety special (pre-recorded). Stan Lathan was also nominated for outstanding directing of a variety special for his work on "The Closer."

After the Emmy nominations were announced, people on social media voiced their frustration and criticized the decision to give further recognition to Chappelle's Netflix special.

Dave Chappelle attacked onstage

In May 2022, Chappelle was attacked onstage at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles during the Netflix Is A Joke festival.

An audience member stormed the stage asChappelle, 48, was exiting the stage after his performance, lunging at him and tackling him to the ground, according to a press release from the Los Angeles Police Department.

The man also pointed a replica handgun, which contained a knife blade, at Chappelle during the encounter, resulting in a charge for assault with a deadly weapon, according to police.

The man was identified as Isaiah Lee and in December 2022, he was sentenced to 270 days in county jail.

Dave Chappelle hosting 'Saturday Night Live'

In November 2022, Chappelle hosted "Saturday Night Live" for a third time, and the reception was not warm.

"SNL" writer Celeste Yim shared a seemingly pointed message after Chappelle was announced as host. "I'm trans and non-binary. I use they/them pronouns. Transphobia is murder and it should be condemned," they wrote on their Instagram Story alongside a photo from work, captured by a Reddit screenshot.

The hosting gig also came on the heels of "SNL" having just recently hired its first nonbinary cast member, Molly Kearney, just months before.

Dave Chappelle 2023 tour dates

Here are the scheduled dates for Chappelle's fall tour, according to a news release.

  • Aug. 22: New York City – Madison Square Garden

  • Aug. 23: New York City – Madison Square Garden

  • Sept. 8: Cleveland, Ohio – Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse

  • Sept. 9: Detroit, Michigan – Little Caesars Arena

  • Sept. 12: Lexington, Kentucky – Rupp Arena

  • Sept. 13: Indianapolis, Indiana – Gainbridge Fieldhouse

  • Sept. 15: New Orleans, Louisiana – Smoothie King Arena

  • Sept. 17: Kansas City, Missouri – T-Mobile Center

  • Sept. 18: Omaha, Nebraska – CHI Health Center

  • Sept. 21: Nashville, Tennessee – Bridgestone Arena

  • Sept. 23: Saint Paul, Minnesota – Xcel Energy Center

  • Oct. 4: Chicago, Illinois – United Center

Contributing: Charles Trepany, Marco della Cava, Elise Brisco, Naledi Ushe, Anthony Robledo and Jenna Ryu, USA TODAY

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Dave Chappelle tour announced for fall: See the US dates, locations