Chappelle Will Lead Comedy Tour
RICHMOND, Va. — In a packed theater here on Saturday, Dave Chappelle introduced a comedy bit by explaining that there was a time when he didn’t want to return to the public eye. “I didn’t want to do comedy,” he said, explaining that he wasn’t sure he had something to say. That’s certainly changed.
After years of dropping by clubs for surprise sets and occasionally playing theaters, Mr. Chappelle is returning to the spotlight in the Oddball Comedy & Curiosity Festival, a tour produced by FunnyorDie.com that will feature Mr. Chappelle, Flight of the Conchords, Hannibal Buress, Demetri Martin and Kristen Schaal, among others. The monthlong tour, which includes a second stage hosted by the comic Brody Stevens, begins in Austin, Tex., on Aug. 23 and will make stops in New Jersey at the Susquehanna Bank Center on Sept. 6 and the PNC Bank Arts Center on Sept. 7.
Almost since he left his Comedy Central hit “Chappelle’s Show” in 2005, his return has been rumored, heating up in the past year since he appeared with Chris Rock at the Comedy Cellar in New York. Mr. Chappelle is now touring the South playing to sold-out audiences. At a show in March, his performance was freewheeling with extended exchanges with the crowd. This past weekend his two sets still had that same spontaneity, but the jokes had tightened, and the transitions were quicker. Wearing a tank top and roaming around the stage in a quickening pace, he had the look of a man getting ready.