February 7, 2014


2003 Flashback Alert: Watch T.A.T.U. Play Sochi Olympics Opening Ceremony

Han Myung-Gu/WireImage
Han Myung-Gu/WireImage

UPDATE (2/7): The 2014 Winter Olympics have begun! After a major snowflake/Olympic ring fail, t.A.T.u. took the stage. The famous faux lesbian duo walked out holding hands to perform the Russian-language version of "Not Gonna Get Us." Watch above to see the girls cheerily bounce around the stage. No word how Putin took the constant hand-holding and girl-on-girl hug (gasp) at the end. Watch the performance here.

Meanwhile, Blondie has spoken out publicly about not performing at Sochi

Original Story: So here's a doozy for your #ThrowbackThursday: Famous fake lesbian Russian pop duo t.A.T.u. will perform at the 2014 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony. 

Quick refresher: You might remember Lena Katina and Yulia Volkova, aka t.A.T.u., for their Top 20 hit "All the Things She Said" and follow-up single "Not Gonna Get Us," both released in 2003. Marketed with a mysterious are-they-or-aren't-they teen lesbians? concept, then-14-year-old Volkova and then-15-year-old Katina achieved global popularity and infamously performed at the 2003 MTV Movie Awards with hundreds of women stripping down to their underwear and kissing one another. Both members, who are actually heterosexual, went solo once their popularity faded in the mid-'00s, but have reunited for occasional performances.

According to Russian reports, the girls will perform "Not Gonna Get Us," which failed to chart on the Billboard Hot 100, but was a big hit in Europe and Australia. Katina reportedly took to Twitter to complain about the performance prep. "They have invited us to perform at the opening ceremony of the Sochi Olympics but they're treating the artists like sh-t!!!" she wrote in a post, later deleted. "The organization is horrible."

No word on how Russian officials will deal with a performance by the pseudo-lesbian act, given the country's recently-enforced ban against "gay propaganda" to minors. A lot of what made t.A.T.u. so remarkable—from the concept to their constant hand-holding—is likely in direct violation of the law. Still, when you consider the number of Russian music acts that would be recognized by an international audience, the list is very short. There's t.A.T.u... and Pussy Riot, who we really doubt are going to make a glorified appearance in Sochi.