"When I'm onstage, I get real happy up there. Maybe that's the only time in my adult life that I feel like myself. You're standing up there — you know what I mean — like a gladiator, and them lights is on you, and you look down and everyone's looking up at you ... and it's all these smiles around you. And they get dressed and they put perfume on and stuff, and they're going to see your show. That feels good, man. These people, you know, they love you. Even if it's for a minute, they really do. They love you, man. You know, it's like a love-fest ... It's the best feeling, man. I love stand-up." - Comedian and actor Dave Chappelle on Inside the Actor’s Studio, 2006
Dave Chappelle has achieved legendary status. As news of a documentary investigating his abrupt 2005 exit during season 3 of his hit Comedy Central series Chappelle’s Show hits the media, the comedian wows NYC during a current ten-date stand-up engagement at Radio City Music Hall.
The 2-hour film, Chappelle’s Show: The 50 Million Dollar Question, reportedly features interviews with Chappelle and his show's co-creator Neal Brennan discussing how corporate drama and politics led to his stunning departure from a $50 Million contract. Released a year ago on YouTube, the video was removed until its recent uploading and availability on vimeo.
Chappelle is one of the geniuses of comedy. He set a stand-up endurance record at the Laugh Factory Sunset Strip comedy club, beating Dane Cook's record of three hours and 50 minutes in 2007. Chappelle later broke his own record in December of that year. In August 2013, he embarked on the Oddball Comedy & Curiosity festival. Now, he's wrapping ten-days at Radio City Music Hall. Having kicked off Wednesday, June 18, the show runs through June 27th after an additional five dates were added due to sold-out fan demand.
Fans got more than they expected Friday night June 20th, when Kanye West made a special guest appearance at Chappelle’s comedy show. Hopping onto the Radio City Music Hall stage, West performed three songs, “New Slaves,” “Gold Digger” and “Jesus Walks." Nas made an appearance at the show Monday June 23rd, celebrating the 20th anniversary of his Illmatic debut album. He performed with a 45-piece orchestra. The Roots appeared Tuesday, June 24. While rapper Busta Rhymes, DJ Premier and Janelle Monáe rock the Wednesday, June 25 set. Erykah Badu will close strong on Thursday, June 26.
Scheduled to perform at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colorado on August 24th, Dave Chappelle's return to sold-out crowds proves that his comedy will never die, no matter how long he may take to return to TV or the worldwide stage.