Dave Chappelle: The Kennedy Center Mark Twain Prize

Dave Chappelle: The Kennedy Center Mark Twain Prize

Tue, 01/07/2020 - 9:00pm - 10:30pm

Pictured: Dave Chappelle

Credit: Courtesy of Danny Clinch

This dynamic, newly-reimagined PBS program honors comedian, actor, writer and producer Dave Chappelle, chronicling his extraordinary life and career.

Through an intimate hybrid of documentary film and star-studded gala performance, Dave Chappella is celebrated as he receives the 22nd annual Mark Twain Prize for American Humor from the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Dave Chappelle: The Kennedy Center Mark Twain Prizetaped in October in Washington, D.C., the Kennedy Center Concert Hall and the DC Improv, airs Tuesday, January 7, 2020 at 9 p.m. on WXXI-TV.

The 90-minute special features a star-studded lineup of friends, admirers and entertainment industry colleagues paying tribute to the comedian’s humor and accomplishments. In a twist on the beloved annual event, this year’s broadcast shares raw, behind-the-scenes looks and insights with Chappelle and his friends. Participants include Neal Brennan, Michael Che, Common, Bradley Cooper, Morgan Freeman, Tiffany Haddish, Colin Jost, John Legend, Lorne Michaels, Q-Tip, Trevor Noah, Sarah Silverman, Jon Stewart, Keenan Thompson and others.

In his acceptance speech Chappelle said, “Standup comedy is an incredibly American genre. I don’t think any other country could produce this many comedians. And I don’t think there’s an opinion that exists in this country that is not represented in a comedy club by somebody…The First Amendment is first for a reason. Second Amendment is just in case the first one doesn’t work out.”

Chappelle is an internationally recognized stand-up comedian and actor whose trademark wit and sharp, irreverent social commentary explores race, popular culture, sex, drugs, politics and fame. Arguably the most-touring comic on the circuit, Chappelle has performed more than 1,600 concerts worldwide in the past four years.