Dave Chappelle likes to sing. A fact that lucky fans and VIP friends have been privy to all week as the homegrown comedian hosts semiprivate after-parties to his sold-out shows at the Warner Theatre in downtown D.C.
After similar events at 18th Street Lounge and Blues Alley, Chappelle hosted his last such party (at least for the time being) on Saturday night at the Hamilton Live near the White House. True to his musical roots, the joke-slinger got on stage not just to offer punchlines but to lead the crowd of 500 in a singalong. Tracks by the Notorious BIG and Roberta Flack are his go-tos.
But at Saturday’s session, Chappelle, who hosts these jams with his pal jazz musician Frederic Yonnet, wasn’t the biggest name on the bill. Singer Bruno Mars, who performed two shows at Capital One Arena, also hopped onstage.
A tipster tells us the “24k Magic” singer arrived with his band after 1 a.m. Mars and co. ordered food and sat near the stage. No biggie. And all fans could do was point and stare. That’s the thing about Chappelle’s pop-ups: Everyone has to lock their phone in a special pouch that can’t be opened inside the venue, creating a cellphone-free zone.
“When people are asking for selfies all night, that doesn’t make it fun,” said our source in the room.
So there’s no Instagram evidence of Mars and his “hooligans” storming the stage to perform “That’s What I Like” and a medley of R&B hits. But it did happen.