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USA Promotional Tour
February/March 2003

The t.A.T.u. girls' first USA promotional tour was amazing, and I sure the girls are really tired after a packed schedule for a week and a half. On behalf of all American t.A.T.u. fans, I want to say thanks for coming to the USA, and we hope you will come back soon! You're always welcome here. I know you've probably had your share of early mornings, rude talk show hosts, and crazed fans, but a lot of people really love you here. Unfortunately, you've also found out that "the land of the free" is not really all that free, particularly when it comes to TV networks. Oh well, at least Russia's a free country (I never thought I'd be saying that).


The girls had a pretty tight schedule, and appeared on seven TV shows, four radio shows, and one live appearance. Their schedule is shown below:

Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
16  February
Fly to Los Angeles
23  February

Lena & Julia arrive in Los Angeles
4:30pm:  The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn taping (airs Feb 28)
4:30pm:  The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (airs 11:35pm EST)

9:00pm:  KIIS-FM JoJo's 9 @ 9 live radio show
8:00am:  KIIS-FM Rick Dees live radio interview

9:05pm:  Jimmy Kimmel Live live TV show
Sessions @ AOL
4:30pm:  Mad TV taping (airs March 8)

12:30am (March 1):  The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn airs (taped Feb 24)
Fly to New York
2  March
2:00pm:  Autograph session at FYE in
Willowbrook Mall, Wayne, New Jersey

7:40pm:  Interview ¹ with Blender magazine (for May 2003 issue)
4:00pm:  TRL (MTV)

6:00pm:  IMX (MuchMusic USA)
7:30am:  Z100 live radio interview

6:30pm:  Last Call with Carson Daly taping (airs March 13)
7:00am:  WBLI Morning Show live radio interview

Fly to Los Angeles
(Julia will see specialists about her vocal chord problems before returning to Moscow)
7 8
11:00pm:  Mad TV airs (taped Feb 28)
9  March
Fly home to Moscow

5:00pm:  Lena & Julia arrive in Moscow

7:00pm: E! Interview airs
1:30am (March 13):  Last Call with Carson Daly airs (taped Feb 4)

Note: All times are local time unless otherwise specified. California is PST (GMT-8:00), New York/New Jersey is EST (GMT-5:00).

¹ Not sure of date.

The Tonight Show with Jay Leno

t.A.T.u's American TV debut was on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (NBC) on Tuesday, February 24, 2003. The show included a performance of "All The Things She Said", but did not include an interview.

Immediately, the girls created, in Lena's words "such a big scandal". The girls were asked not to kiss during their performance of "All The Things She Said", so, in true t.A.T.u. spirit, they kissed anyway. Lena said later, in an interview with Rick Dees, that "some girl who works there was really very close to losing her job" because she had told them not to kiss, and they did it anyway. Later, they were angered to find out that the camera cut away during their kiss and showed the guitar player instead. The TV viewing audience did not see the kiss at all! In their interview with Rick Dees the following day, Lena simply said "They're crazy". Julia suggested jokingly that the woman who was trying to censor their kiss was probably a lesbian herself, and was probably just jealous that she couldn't do it herself! Go Julia! At the end of the show, Arsenio Hall, who was also a guest on the show, attempted to plant a big kiss on Jay Jeno. He obviously didn't know that the kiss had been cut, but all the t.A.T.u. fans knew what had happened.

On the same show, Lena and Julia both wore shirts that were hand printed with the Russian message "ХУЙ ВОЙНЕ!", which, loosely translated, means "Fuck War!". Since nobody at the Tonight Show could read Russian, they didn't stop them from wearing the shirts. Let's give Lena and Julia a big round of applause for finding a way to get their message across to the American people! I've included their message on each page of this web site.

Rick Dees (Radio)

t.A.T.u. was interviewed by Rick Dees during his morning radio show at KIIS-FM in Burbank, California on Wednesday, February 25. This interview (Real Audio) and pictures are available on Rick Dee's web site. They talked about their Tonight Show scandal and their music. Julia had a translator there and spoke mostly Russian. The interview lasted about 15 minutes.

When asked what their next single will be, Lena replied, "I think the next single will be Not Gonna Get Us, because in Russia it was like this, and we think that here it will be the same thing." She then discussed their album further, saying "All the songs is about our life -- about our relationships, and every song is like a story from our life." The interviewer asked what part of the story of their life is the song Not Gonna Get Us about. Lena replied,

"That one was when we had some problems with our parents, like with our relationships, because our parents was like 'Oh my God! No! My daughter is lesbian! No! I can't believe it! I can't believe it! It's too bad. It's too bad. Be careful! You shouldn't do it like this!' And so on and so forth. Then we decided to live together with Julia alone, without parents, and we called our producer and he helped us to find the flat where we could live, and we were living together about maybe half a year or a year. But now it's totally okay, and our parents are like -- of course they love us, they need us, and they miss us, and they want us to be with them."
"Of course now, because we're traveling a lot, in Moscow we live with our parents -- Julia with her parents and me with mine. But it was really a very difficult time -- when your parents can't understand you it's really very difficult."
Rick Dees then asked, "Are you in love with Julia?", to which Lena replied, "um, private question." Julia then asked (through the translator), "Why? Is it important to know? Do you have a better offer?", and everyone laughed.

When asked how they met, Julia said (through the translator) that they were in a band of young people (professional) where they would sing and perform, and they were there for 4 years together. After a while they lost touch after Julia left the group, and they were reintroduced when there was this huge casting for t.A.T.u.  It was just fate that they wound up together. Their producer had no idea that they knew each other from this group. Lena added, "and now we know each other already about seven years".

All in all, it was a pretty fun interview, and the girls seemed in good spirits.

Jimmy Kimmel Live

t.A.T.u. appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live (ABC) on Wednesday, February 25. After hearing about their "big scandal" on the Tonight Show the night before, the host reserved some time to interview them before their performance of "All The Things She Said". Before the commercial, he said "We have those lesbian kissing gals".

When the girls came out, Julia seemed in good spirits but Lena looked aggravated. They wore shirts that said "CENSORED" instead of the "ХУЙ ВОЙНЕ!" shirts they wore on the Tonight Show. The host, Jimmy Kimmel, made a big deal about the censored kiss from the Tonight Show, and even showed a clip of the censored part from the previous night's show. He said, "This is ABC. We don't censor anything. We'll put any crap on." But Lena was not impressed. She said that the people back stage didn't let them wear their "ХУЙ ВОЙНЕ!" shirts. I think that's why she was irritated, saying "Thank you ABC! You're like NBC!" Jimmel Kimmel then quickly changed the subject.

The best part of the show was when Julia wrote the words "ХУЙ ВОЙНЕ!" on Jimmy Kimmel's hand and showed it to the camera. When he asked "What does this say?", Julia said "No war" twice. Then Lena said something that was bleeped out (probably the literal translation). Many fans were upset about this interview because the host only talked about the kiss and the censorship and did not even mention their music.

Jimmel Kimmel introduced their performance by saying "People are always asking me 'Why not have more hot Russian teenage lesbian pop stars on the show?' Alright ladies -- You have our permission. You have the blessing of the Walt Disnay Corporation to do whatever you want..." The girls then performed "All The Things She Said". Since the host had introduced their performance as "totally uncensored", Julia decided to stir things up a little more and see what she could get away with. She grabbed Lena's breast and crotch during the performance. Lena looked surprised and playfully pushed her hand away. But when it came to the kiss, Julia covered their kiss with her hand. The girls kept their dignity on the show by proving an important point: they don't kiss on demand!

t.A.T.u. was the top headline on the Entertainment Weekly web site on Friday, March 7. The headline read, "Can t.A.T.u. turn shock into sales? How the Russian teen duo is making waves -- and enemies -- on the talk show circuit". Apparently the Tonight Show is angry because they kissed, and the Jimmy Kimmel show is angry because they didn't kiss! It seems like they can't win! And we expect them to feel welcome in our country? They probably went home feeling totally confused! Those screwy Americans don't know what they want!

Sessions @ AOL

The girls taped Sessions @ AOL on Thursday, February 27. They performed "All The Things She Said" and "Not Gonna Get Us" with their band in the studio (no audience). There was no interview. They wore their "ХУЙ ВОЙНЕ!" shirts, but did not kiss during the performance. The following is a transscript of the introduction given by an AOL narrator prior to their performace:
"Tatu is the creation of a former TV commercial producer Ivan Shapovalov. Originally conceived around a lone singer, Lena Katina, daughter of a famous Russian musician, Shapovalov felt it wasn't enough so he gave her a partner and watched the sparks fly. The result -- one of the most controversial debuts in years -- a collection of songs that suggestively portray a questionable love affair between the two young singers. It went on to become the biggest selling album of all time in their native Russia. Now arriving stateside, we feature them here in live performance..."


The girls taped the show Mad TV (FOX) on Friday, February 28. The show was aired on Saturday, March 8. Again, the girls were not allowed to kiss, and they didn't. They wore shirts that were tied around their waist exposing their belly buttons, but the shirts didn't have any signs on them (probably censored too). Julia threw down the microphone stand at one point during the performance, and Lena looked surprised (smiling).


Lena and Julia appeared on TRL (MTV) on Monday, March 3. They wore their "ХУЙ ВОЙНЕ!" shirts with no problem (professionally printed this time). They had a short interview and then performed "All The Things She Said" with a brief kiss. The girls were very playful and hugged each other during their interview.

Read Carlos' Story for a very interesting first-hand encounter with the t.A.T.u. girls as they left their TRL appearance.


The girls appeared on IMX (MuchMusic USA) after their TRL appearance on Monday, March 3. This show was an interview only, and there were lots of fans at the show. This time the fans were the ones wearing the "ХУЙ ВОЙНЕ!" shirts! Go fans!

Z100 (Radio)

t.A.T.u. were interviewed during the morning radio show at Z100 in New York City on Tuesday, March 4. They talked about their Tonight Show scandal again and their music. Julia had a translator there and didn't talk very much. They were on the radio show from about 7:35am to 8:00am.

By this time, they were sick of answering the same questions over and over and they were really tired because it was so early in the morning. The girls were trying to fluster the interviewer, and wanted to ask him questions, so Lena asked, "with whom do you like to have sex -- with girl or with boy?", to which the interviewer responded "with whoever will give it up."  Lena asked, "Even with animals?" and the interviewer responded, jokingly, "absolutely!"  Lena came back, "Oh! Super!" and then asked "at what time -- in the morning, because somebody likes it in the morning, somebody at night...", to which the interviewer reponded "Honey, when you're like me you get it when you can get it!".

The interviewer also asked the standard questions about their music, and played the songs "All The Things She Said" and "Not Gonna Get Us". Most of the rest of the interview was pretty similar to the Rick Dees interview.


Lena and Julia were interviewed during the Morning Show at WBLI on Long Island on Wednesday, March 5. This interview (Real Audio) and pictures are available on WBLI's web site. The interview lasted about 6½ minutes. Most of the standard questions were asked, and the girls would rather have been sleeping this early in the morning.

Julia spoke more in this interview than in most. When asked if they understand English, Julia said "Lena speaks English." When the interviewer asked Julia if she understands English, Julia said "I speak a little, but I understand." So there you have it! This should answer a question that many people have been asking. I think Julia speaks better English than she gives herself credit for. I didn't have any trouble understanding her. I know it's tough to learn a new language, and you're always worried that you'll look stupid, but I think that most people understand the difficulty, and Julia shouldn't be self-conscious about speaking. She does just fine!

When asked about "this whole lesbian thing" and whether they were just friends or more than friends, Julia simply said "I love her. I want her. I kiss her." The interviewer then asked why they think The Tonight Show, censored their kiss, and Lena replied, "They were afraid first of all, but we don't give a shit!". When asked if Americans are more conservative than Europeans, Lena said, "I think they shows more conservative than they are... They should do whatever they want to do. We are doing what we want to do. We are free -- we can do whatever we want." I think that is a very fitting statement to close t.A.T.u.'s American tour, and I think the USA should take some advice from two Russian girls in this case. How can we be so hypocritical as to tell other countries that they should be free when we're not all that free ourselves? It seems that other countries take our advice better than we do! Thanks for the reality check t.A.T.u.!

TV and Radio Appearances

Date/Time City Date/Time First Aired Medium Station Program Interview Performance
Tue, Feb 24, 2003, 4:30pm PST Los Angeles, CA Fri, Feb 28, 2003, 12:30am EST ¹ TV CBS The Late Late Show no All The Things She Said
Tue, Feb 25, 2003, 4:30pm PST Burbank, CA Tue, Feb 25, 2003, 11:35pm EST TV NBC The Tonight Show no All The Things She Said
Tue, Feb 25, 2003, 9:00pm PST Burbank, CA Tue, Feb 25, 2003, 9:00pm PST * Radio KIIS-FM JoJo's 9 @ 9 yes  
Wed, Feb 26, 2003, 8:00am PST Burbank, CA Wed, Feb 26, 2003, 8:00am PST * Radio KIIS-FM Rick Dees yes  
Wed, Feb 26, 2003, 9:05pm PST Los Angeles, CA Thu, Feb 27, 2003, 12:05am EST * TV ABC Jimmy Kimmel Live yes All The Things She Said
Fri, Feb 28, 2003, 4:30pm PST Hollywood, CA Sat, March 8, 2003, 11:00pm EST TV FOX Mad TV no All The Things She Said
Mon, Mar 3, 2003, 4:00pm EST New York, NY Mon, Mar 3, 2003, 4:00pm EST * TV MTV TRL yes All The Things She Said
Mon, Mar 3, 2003, 6:00pm EST New York, NY Mon, Mar 3, 2003, 6:00pm EST * TV MMUSA IMX yes  
Tue, Mar 4, 2003, 7:30am EST New York, NY Tue, Mar 4, 2003, 7:30am EST * Radio Z100 The Z Morning Zoo yes  
Tue, Mar 4, 2003, 6:30pm EST New York, NY Wed, Mar 12, 2003, 1:30am EST ¹ TV NBC Last Call no All The Things She Said
Wed, Mar 5, 2003, 7:00am EST New York, NY Wed, Mar 5, 2003, 7:00am EST * Radio WBLI Morning Show yes  

* Live
¹ Late-night show: Technically, the date is one day later in the early morning.

Last Updated:  April 14, 2003
Email:  cplarosa@yahoo.com