UPDATE: After his six shows at First Avenue quickly sold out earlier today, Dave Chappelle has added a seventh Minneapolis show at the State Theatre on June 3 at 7 p.m. Tickets go on sale at 4 p.m. today for $65 via the State box office, 612-339-7007. First Ave was already booked with a concert that night, as well as the night before his run begins on May 31. It's not clear if he intends to add still more shows, including a possible second set on June 3, but history (and strong ticket sales) would suggest it's in consideration. Here's what we wrote on the initial six-show announcement.
Perhaps recognizing the need to bring a little laughter into Minneapolis’s legendary rock club in the wake of Prince’s death, comedy genius Dave Chappelle will return to First Avenue for a three-night, six-show run May 31-June 2. Tickets go on sale Friday at noon for $65 via First-Avenue.com.
Chappelle apparently likes the club: He turned a four-night stand there into a weeklong stint in 2013, winding up with 10 First Ave gigs plus two more at the neighboring Pantages Theatre. First Ave likes Chappelle, too: The club made him the first comedian to get a star on the side of the building alongside all the legendary rock bands.
As was the case in 2013, the comedian is prohibiting all cell phones at the shows (so his work doesn’t wind up on YouTube the next day). Also much like before, it’s not exactly clear what he has in mind for the performances. He infamously went on the lam from his popular Comedy Central TV show in 2005 and virtually dropped out of the business. He has been booking sporadic multi-night runs since 2013 but has yet to return to TV. Rumors of an HBO special last year proved to be false.
His First Ave sets in 2013 were often off-the-cuff and rambling – we caught one that lasted three hours – but nonetheless brought high praise for his riotous riffs on racial issues, Wall Street, music, you name it. He delivered a few funny Prince bits at some of the shows, too.
That 2013 run ended with an after-hours charity basketball fete and pancake breakfast at Target Center, a nod to the famous skit with Charlie Murphy that aired on Chappelle’s TV show about a particularly memorable night with Prince (see below). The singer didn’t make the party but did send a $25,000 donation to the Timberwolves’ Fastbreak Foundation, and he reportedly had Chappelle out to Paisley Park that week, too.