Dave Chappelle has yet another show ruined by hecklers

By | June 21, 2012 at 1:54 pm | 2 comments | News | Tags: , , , ,

Dave Chappelle performed a set at the Paramount Theater in Austin, Texas on Tuesday, but despite the show having sold out in a matter of minutes, a large portion of the audience did not greet Chappelle too warmly.

You may remember last year when Chappelle brought a show in Miami to a hault after being heckled and videotaped. Chappelle was criticized by some for letting the audience derail the show and not continuing with the material, and according to many fans who were in the crowd on Tuesday, the Austin show went in a similar direction. It began when Dave noticed a fan in the front row recording the performance, and had their camera confiscated. (You may remember a similar incident with Patton Oswalt.) When security came in to escort them out, though, Dave called them off and allowed the audience member to stay. Meanwhile, a few audience members began to yell to Chappelle, and Dave continued to acknowledge his hecklers throughout the night.

Because Dave acknowledged the hecklers, but didn’t take the “iron fist” approach some comedians tend to take with hecklers to shut them down, the show spiraled and the crowd got the wrong idea that Dave (not to mention the polite majority of the audience who were just there to see a set from the comedian) welcomed an audience participation aspect to the show.

Sources from the crowd had different opinions on the show. Some claimed to have been disappointed by the show before the heckling began, saying Chappelle didn’t seem to have much material planned, leaned on crowd work and didn’t deliver a set with enough momentum to hold their attention. Others were just fine with Dave’s set and blame the few members of the crowd who heckled the comedian to have thrown the show off. Either way, though, you know how we feel. It’s never, ever cool to heckle a comedian.

About the Author

Lucas Gardner

Lucas Gardner is a writer native to Rochester, NY. He nows lives in New York City. He has a Twitter and a blog.

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  • Victor Oleinikov

    Saw a 2 hour Chappelle set earlier this year in SF.  With his performance it was difficult to tell when it was heckling and when it was crowd work.  Sometimes he asked a member of the crowd a question (as with traditional crowd work) but other times he seemed to welcome crowd participation in the form of heckling — I specifically remember him doing some material on working out after somebody in the crowd yelled that he looked bigger than before.  Seemed like he had about 40% of his set planned and the rest was improvised from this crowd work/heckling response mix.  I thought it was a great show.  

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