D.C.-born comedy legend Dave Chappelle is performing at the Warner Theatre, Sep. 19-30. Tickets are going fast, so grab your seats now!Any comedy fan from D.C. in this day and age would recognize the name Dave Chappelle – in fact, anyone who walks by Ben’s Chili Bowl on U St. should recognize his face – but the public hasn’t been afforded many chances to see him perform in the past few years besides surprise appearances in comedy clubs and some recent additions to Netflix. (In fact, his Netflix specials are performances taped at a couple of his larger venues in the last few years.) This September at the Warner Theatre, D.C. fans of Chappelle will have their first chance to see the Chappelle’s Show and Half-Baked star perform live in the city in far too long. WHEN: September 19-30 | 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. shows available WHERE: Warner Theatre | 513 13th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20004 Chappelle first began performing comedy in New York City in the 1980s, quickly garnering attention from top performers like Whoopi Goldberg. His film debut came at the early age of 19, in Mel Brooks’ Robin Hood: Men in Tights. His starring role in 1998’s Half-Baked, co-written by Chappelle and longtime creative partner Neal Brennan, projected his brand into the A-level talent. After performing sold-out shows across the country and appearing in the Tom Hanks romantic comedy You've Got Mail, it wasn’t long until he would be offered a show-running opportunity. Comedy Central debuted Chappelle’s Show in 2003 to immediate critical and audience acclaim. His politically charged sketches gave his viewers an anchor to hang onto as the comedian took them on his increasingly-wilder rides. The over-the-top absurdity in many of his sketches was a perfect balance to the dark humor that would creep in and leave audiences thinking about the moral of the sketch for longer than they had expected. Truly, Dave Chappelle made a lasting enough impression on viewers that any “woke” sketch comedy will be compared to his show for decades to come. Characters and impersonations performed on the show, like Chappelle’s absurd Prince or his overly simplistic take on Rick James, captured the zeitgeist of the mid-2000s so well that the performer found it nearly impossible to perform comedy onstage without constant heckling from supporters. Comedians must unfortunately grow used to audience members getting too boisterous from time to time, but when entire crowds are shouting your characters’ catchphrases at you like you’re a band that they want to see play “Freebird,” it’s hard to get your job done.
Chappelle walked away from a highly lucrative deal with Comedy Central in 2006, taking time off to be with family and learn more about himself and his approach to humor. He eventually found the right path back to performing live comedy, and his work has grown more provocative -- and popular -- than ever. His two most recent specials on Netflix have been reported as the No. 1 and No. 2 most-watched comedy specials on the streaming service, out of the dozens available. It’s clear that Dave Chappelle is getting hotter with each new take, so don’t miss out on what he has in store for D.C.! Dave Chappelle will be at the Warner Theatre from Sep. 19 to Sep. 30. There are multiple shows a day, but tickets are selling out fast. Check the availability for individual shows here. What’s your favorite Chappelle’s Show sketch? Did you see him perform live in recent years? Let us know in the comments below!