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The Independent UK
The Independent UK
Inga Parkel

George Lopez cuts show early after being ‘heckled’ off stage by ‘unruly’ audience

Getty Images for SCAD

Comedian George Lopez walked off stage at his recent show at the Eagle Mountain Casino in California after he was apparently heckled by an “overserved and unruly” audience.

Lopez, 63, was reportedly only 25 minutes into his set on June 7 when he abruptly ended the performance due to unwanted interruptions from the crowd.

In videos of the moment posted on social media, the stand-up comic can be seen sitting on a stool performing one of his sets. Throughout the recording, loud and punctuated shouts from the crowd can be heard, with Lopez looking annoyed. At one point, he stands up, pleading to the audience to “please, just f***ing watch the show.”

“That’s all you have to do,” he says in exasperation. “Just relax, man. F***. Seriously.” Following another shout from the crowd, Lopez puts his microphone back on the stand, waves and walks off, eliciting boos from the crowd.

The venue released a statement on Facebook the next day, calling out Lopez for letting “down his fans and sold out audience by walking out and ending his show 30 minutes early.”

“George hired his own private security that could have easily escorted any hecklers out,” the message continued. “We had a pre show meeting to have a plan in place for hecklers. He could have provided us an opportunity to allow our security and team to escort any hecklers out since his own private security did not. George decided to not continue with the show and leave.”

Lopez’s representatives have since responded, placing the blame on the casino.

“It’s the venue or casino’s job to provide a good experience for both the artist and the fans, but the casino failed in this regard,” they said in a statement shared with TMZ. “... the casino staff was unable to provide a safe and enjoyable experience for the artist and guests.”

They argued that Lopez’s “personal security team worked with venue security staff to maintain order, ensure safety and eject disruptive individuals.”

“Unfortunately, the casino security team was not adequate to accomplish this task,” they said. “George is not obligated to perform in an unsafe environment. He feels badly that those who came to see the show were unable to do so as a result.”

George Lopez’s representative placed blame on the casino for failing to ‘to provide a good experience for both the artist and the fans’ (Getty Images for SCAD)

Lopez had originally been scheduled to perform at the Eagle Mountain Casino back in April; however, he was forced to reschedule it “due to a medical emergency,” the casino said in its original Facebook post.

“We were very patient with him and only wished him the best,” it added. “Tonight we went above and beyond to provide George with first class service from his arrival to the property to the start of his show. We never want to let our guests down and we are as disappointed and shocked as you are.”

The casino released an official statement on Monday apologizing to attendees and offering full refunds and complimentary tickets to any future 2024 show.

“Lopez’s statement providing reason for exiting the show abruptly after not saying anything to casino management or security, came as a shock to everyone including casino management,” the statement read. “The claims of unruly guests are not consistent with casino footage and surveillance.”

“While we did see guests yelling out, we see recordings showing those saying – we love you, can we buy you a drink, etc. We also know that at a comedy show, there are also likely some outbursts that casino security would have been happy to address had any issue been made known,” Tiffani Sahagun, the casino’s assistant general manager said in the statement. “We only want for our guests to have a safe and enjoyable experience, and we want our entertainers to feel safe and enjoy coming to Porterville as well.”

Lopez’s representative told The Independent that they do not wish to comment further on the matter.

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