- Dave Chappelle’s alma mater was planning on naming a theater after the famed comedian.
- Due to backlash to The Closer, though, the Duke Ellington School of the Arts decided to postpone the ceremony until April.
- Despite this, the school remains committed to renaming a theater after the legendary stand-up.
In an effort to handle the controversy on his own term, Dave Chappelle challenged both his critics and his supporters to donate to his alma mater, the Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington D.C., as a method of voicing their opinion in regards to whether or not the school should rename a theater after him.
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Despite this, though, the Duke Ellington School of the Arts has announced that — regardless of how the impromptu “vote” turns out — they are standing by and sticking with their decision to rename a theater after him, as it was the wish of their late co-founder, Peggy Cooper Cafritz.
“While we appreciate Dave’s impromptu and spirited fundraising initiative, we stand behind our decision to honor the wishes of our co-founder, the late Peggy Cooper Cafritz, to name the theatre after Chappelle. All donations will go towards arts programming and every donor, irrespective of their support or opposition to the theater naming, will receive an official thank you from our team.” [via The Hollywood Reporter]
Chappelle has found himself in the crosshairs of pop culture ever since the release of his Netflix stand-up special The Closer, which was largely comprised of jokes about the LGTBQ community.
In the immediate aftermath of the release of The Closer, some Netflix employees staged a walkout, demanding that the streaming giant remove the special from its platform. Netflix CEO Ted Sarandos, though, stood by Chappelle and his right to “artistic freedom.” Now, it would appear that his alma mater is doing the same.
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