Amid rising numbers of sexual assault allegations against embattled television icon Bill Cosby, the comedian’s Jan. 9 show at Hamilton Place is still going ahead.
The 77-year-old has been under fire in recent weeks as a total of 16 women have come forward to accuse him of sexual abuse. None of the allegations have been proven in court.
In response, promoters of some of his shows – like one in Washington State on Nov. 29 and another at a casino in Connecticut on Jan. 31 – have postponed performances “indefinitely.”
Five other dates in 2015 have also been cancelled – but the show’s promoter says there are no plans to cancel his Hamilton date. “Yes, it is [going ahead],” said a woman who answered the phone at Innovation Arts & Entertainment, based in Chicago.
“Other than that, we don’t have anything else to say,” she said, before quickly hanging up.
Scott Warren, the general manager of FirstOntario Centre, Hamilton Place and the Molson Canadian Studio, echoed that statement.
“The promoter of this show has indicated this show will go on,” Warren said in an email. “Beyond that, we have no comment on this show.”
Some of the accusations against Cosby go back years. Bruce Castor is the Montgomery County Commissioner, but in 2005 he was the county's District Attorney and led an investigation into allegations that Cosby drugged and molested a Canadian woman named Andrea Constand, who was then working at Temple University.
The case was never brought to trial, but she settled with Cosby in a civil action.
The international media, including the CBC, covered the Constand case eight years ago. But only now are those allegations – and others like them – seeming to actually have an impact on Cosby's popularity and career.
In Hamilton, some have taken to social media to denounce Cosby’s local show and say it should be cancelled. Kitestring Branding Studio’s Chris Farias is one of those people.
“Over a dozen women have accused Cosby of sexually assault,” Farias said. “Until we have more information, the show should be postponed indefinitely.”
Cosby will not 'dignify' claims: lawyer
Through his lawyer, Cosby has said he will not dignify "decade-old, discredited" claims of sexual abuse with a response.
In a statement released to The Associated Press and posted online, lawyer John P. Schmitt said the fact that the allegations are being repeated "does not make them true."
"He would like to thank all his fans for the outpouring of support and assure them that, at age 77, he is doing his best work," Schmitt said.
NBC confirmed earlier this week that it was scrapping a deal with Cosby to do a sitcom that was under development, TV Land is pulling reruns of The Cosby Show and Netflix has nixed a special it was set to air next week called Bill Cosby at 77.