TARRYTOWN, N.Y. – Though hundreds have returned their tickets to Bill Cosby’s shows at Tarrytown Music Hall, the theater says it plans to boost security for the two shows on Saturday, Dec. 6.
“There will be ample security,” said Björn Olsson, Tarrytown Music Hall’s executive director. “We will be alerting local law enforcement to make sure everyone in the area is safe and that traffic isn’t being blocked by any potential protests or disturbances.”
Though Olsson couldn’t comment on the ticket count since the show was booked by outside promoters AM Productions, the Daily Voice reported on Monday that hundreds returned their tickets since Cosby agreed to refunds last week.
Cosby’s decision came after ticket holders said they planned to boycott the performances in light of sex assault allegations against the comedian. At least 17 women have accused “The Cosby Show” actor of sexual assault, with many claiming he drugged then raped them.
Though the Music Hall faced criticism, they couldn’t cancel the shows without facing a $120,000 penalty that Olsson said would cause the Music Hall to have to fire staff.
Several venues have recently canceled Cosby’s shows. Cosby, who has not commented on the allegations except calling them “innuendo,” resigned as a member of the Temple University’s board of trustees on Monday, according to CNN.com .
“I absolutely don’t want to sound callous or glib, but we do a lot of shows with a lot of musicians and I bet if we ran criminal and moral background checks on all our artists, we’d have a lot fewer shows,” said Olsson. “Obviously Bill Cosby is unusual, because it seems like the record (of allegations) we’re seeing is unusual.”
The front of the Tarrytown Music Hall no longer features promotional posters for Cosby’s shows.
"If one of those allegations is true, it's terrible but I don't want to make this a case of grading how terrible Bill Cosby is," said Olsson. “We hope people who are outraged, are outraged at Bill Cosby and not at the Music Hall. We’re not endorsing anything.”
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