Brent Butt voices support for comedian Jen Grant
Grant was performing at Toronto corporate event when heckled by man using 'rapey' voice
Saskatchewan-born comedian Brent Butt is rushing to support comedian Jen Grant after she was sexually harassed during a set at a corporate event.
"I have been a standup comedian for 28 years and not once have I been heckled with sexual threats. I also don't know of any other male comics who have been sexually threatened," his Twitter statement read in part.
Grant, who is originally from Ottawa and now lives in Toronto, had been hired to do a 45-minute corporate set in a country club in suburban Toronto. According to Grant, within three minutes of taking the stage, the heckling began.
"I am interrupted by a male ... saying to me, 'There's a 51 per cent chance that my buddy here will have sex with you. and I will take the other 49 per cent,'" she said in a blog post.
Comedian felt 'scared' by heckler
Grant said she routinely deals with hecklers, and in comedy clubs, she can often shut them up quickly, but corporate bookings have different rules. The events are classier, and often she's not allowed to swear or talk about sex.
She said the man in the audience persisted throughout her set, until about 25 minutes in, when Grant felt she couldn't go on.
"'Oh, the things I would do to you,'" Grant quoted the man as saying, in what she called a "rapey" voice.
"It's hard to put into words how I felt at that moment. Scared. Objectified. Threatened. Invalidated," she said.
Grant walked off the stage in tears, something she said she had never done in 16 years as a comedian.
After Grant published her blog on May 19, support began rolling in for the comedian.
It also prompted Butt's rant, posted below, that has been retweeted close to 6,000 times.
Warning: tweet includes language some may find offensive. View the tweet here.
Ok...I got a little angry & couldn't fit it in a tweet, so I put it here: <a href="http://t.co/dtxzgNGWda">pic.twitter.com/dtxzgNGWda</a>—@BrentButt