The possibility of violence erupting at the upcoming Milo Yiannopoulos show at the Patio Theater in Portage Park led to it being canceled, the theater’s operator said Wednesday.
“We expected some protest due to his controversial content. However, once it became clear that there might be a chance [of] violence, we decided to cancel. I monitored incoming emails, social posts, as well as voicemails and it became more of a reality that there would be some sort of conflict,” Charlie Burns, the theater’s operator, wrote in an email to the Chicago Sun-Times Wednesday.
Some 400 tickets to the show had been sold as of Wednesday, Burns said. Refunds are available at ticketfly.com
The controversial alt-right author and speaker’s Nov. 13 show was cancelled Wednesday, just days after Burns told the Sun-Times that “as an independent theater we need to give equal rights to all performers.”
Earlier Wednesday, theater staff issued a statement, saying, in part: “We have heard the voices of our patrons and neighbors and have cancelled the Milo Yiannopoulos show previously scheduled at Patio Theater. While Patio Theater prides itself on being on of the few truly independent venues in Chicago, the views and opinions of the performers do not necessarily reflect the views of this organization.”
As of late last week, some 300 people had RSVP’d to a protest of the show organized by the Chicago chapter of Act Now to Stop War and End Racism, or Answer.
Yiannopoulos’ Troll Academy Tour was set to hit 11 cities in the United States and Australia, with seven of those shows being held at “secret locations.”
Despite the theater’s announcement, the Troll Academy website was still offering the $40 tickets Wednesday morning.