The embattled comedian formerly known as “America’s Dad” has announced his return to the stage after months of laying low following his mistrial for allegedly drugging and raping a woman.
Bill Cosby was expected to perform Monday night both alongside a jazz quartet as well as what seemed to be billed as a solo stand-up comedy performance, according to a press release that the legendary-yet-sullied comedian posted to his Facebook page late Monday afternoon. It would be his first public performance since 2015.
Video of the performance was quickly posted to social media.
The “historic performance with the Tony Williams Jazz Quartet” was scheduled to start at 5:30 p.m. at the LaRose Jazz Club in Philadelphia, where Cosby has been out and about as of late.
It was unclear how impromptu of an announcement this was, as LaRose’s web site made no mention of the Cos’ planned performance.
The show’s announcement came just about three months before the expected start of Cosby’s retrial for allegedly drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, who was just one of at least 51 women who have accused him of doing unthinkable things to them after sedating them with prescription strength pills.
The retial for aggravated indecent assault charges was scheduled to begin April 2 in the same suburban Philadelphia courthouse where the first case ended in a mistrial in June. The timing is important to note as since the mistrial, there has been a resounding chorus of women speaking out against their personal experiences of being victims of sexual assault and overall misconduct.
If prosecutors have their way, Cosby will face as many as 19 of his accusers during the retrial, according to NBC News. That number could include Janice Dickerson, the former supermodel who has claimed Cosby drugged and sexually assaulted her in 1982.
Still, none of that seemed to be on the mind of Cosby, who went out to dinner in Philadelphia Wednesday night, complete with “a crew of publicists, reporters, and cameramen invited to document the moment,” according to Philly.com.
“The feel of this city at this time for me with the snow … you know, it’s just a great, good, crisp feel,” Cosby said at the dinner. But when asked by the press if he planned to do anything else in the city, he replied tersely: “Yes. And you can’t come.”