Grass Valley Center for the Arts cancels Kathy Griffin appearance, following controversial Trump photo

Staff Report

The Grass Valley Center for the Arts has canceled Kathy Griffin’s scheduled June 16 appearance at the Grass Valley Veteran’s Memorial Building, said Julie Baker, the center’s executive director.

Baker announced the cancellation Wednesday, just one day after Griffin released a controversial photo of herself holding a mock version of President Trump’s head, which was covered in fake blood and appeared decapitated. The photo was taken by Tyler Shields, a provocative Los Angeles-based celebrity photographer and contemporary artist.

Griffin released a public apology Tuesday afternoon on Twitter.

“I beg for your forgiveness,” said Griffin in her 30-second apology video. “I went too far.”

Griffin’s Grass Valley appearance was the first scheduled stop on her “Celebrity Run-Ins” stand-up comedy tour.

“We bring a wide variety of arts and entertainment to our community and we booked Kathy Griffin’s Celebrity Run-Ins because we felt now more than ever we needed a good laugh,” said Baker. “Unfortunately due to recent actions for which she has publicly apologized, we have received hundreds of angry and threatening emails and phone calls including threats to the Vets Hall building and our community.”

Baker said that allowing the show to go on would be a threat to public safety.

“We wholeheartedly support free speech, but in light of this situation, our first priority must be public safety, and we feel it is in the best interest of the community we serve to cancel this event,” she said.

Ticket holders for the event will receive a full refund from the box office.

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