Patrons at a nightclub along Quebec City’s famous Grande Allée were 86’d last week when an employee claimed the group was “too homosexual” to stay.
Quebecer Nicolas Gaudreault posted to Facebook that he and his friends were “dancing and having fun” at the Le Dagobert club the night of July 16, when staff informed them the group’s dancing and attire weren’t appropriate for the venue. They were told to leave.
“Some customers were bothered by our clothes, bothered by our dance moves,” Gaudreault recounted. He said the employee asked them to leave before things “ended up in a fight.”
“‘A fight,'” Gaudreault quoted the employee. “All we did was dance and have fun.”
Gaudreault said other patrons at the club were throwing wine bottle corks at the group, pointing at and harassing them.
“Of course we looked gay CAUSE WE ARE,” he added. “And I’ll never be ashamed of it.”
The backlash was swift.
The next evening at the Festival d’été de Québec, a major outdoor music festival in the provincial capital, Canadian-famous singer-songwriter Emile Bilodeau condemned the abusive behavior from the stage and encouraged the crowd to boycott the club.
Then he asked them to sing along to a “crude song” targeting the venue.
Following the performance, Le Dagobert claims workers at the club were “assaulted” in response.
Bilodeau, meanwhile, said on social media that he was threatened with legal action by the nightclub. He has since removed that post.
A spokesman for Bilodeau said Wednesday that “in no way” did the singer “incite his fans to go after the bar or anyone else.”
Le Dagobert later addressed the incident on Facebook, posting that it “fired one of its employees in response to the accusations of homophobia.”
While that post was subsequently deleted, another explained: “After further verifications, interrogations, and viewing of images, we found that an employee took the initiative to suggest to customers to move or to leave.”
The post added that it was the “ill-intentioned customers” who “should have been expelled.”
“I’m still shocked,” said Gaudreault. “I condemn the Dagobert employees who are clearly aware of these situations and who prefer to turn a blind eye, to the detriment of having a safe and inclusive environment for customers.”