Spandy Andy denied visa, says he's too 'flamboyant' for Sochi
Published Thursday, February 6, 2014 8:05AM EST
Street performer and YouTube sensation Spandy Andy has been denied a visa to travel to Russia for the Sochi Olympics.
The Red Deer, Alta. native – whose name has, in fact, been legally changed to Spandy Andy– hoped to take his unique brand high energy performance to the Black Sea resort city.
Andy has already performed around the world, garnering tens of millions of YouTube views along the way.
“It’s dancing and comedy mixed together,” Andy told CTV News. “I just love to surprise people.”
He attempted to procure a visa while he was in Australia, but said the visa officer “looked for any possible way to make sure I couldn’t go.”
Spandy was told that the fact he didn’t have tickets for the Olympics, was with his American girlfriend, and the two of them were applying from Australia, all raised red flags.
“He told me I’d have to fly to Ottawa to try at the Russian embassy there with my Canadian passport and my girlfriend would have to fly to Seattle,” he said.
But Andy thinks the real reason he’s not going is because he showed up to the Russian embassy in a rainbow shirt.
“I’m very outgoing,” he said. “I’m a flamboyant person and I think they might be looking for that and trying to stop that for the Olympics.”
Andy admits his act would likely break Russia’s controversial anti-gay law, but says that if he had the chance to travel there, he would try to create a video for his YouTube channel.
“I also wanted to promote equality for all humans,” he said.
Russia passed an anti-LGBT law last year that bans the “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations.”
Andy likely won’t be making his way to Sochi, but he’s already planning to take his dance routine to the beaches of Rio for the Olympics in 2016.
With a report from CTV Calgary’s Kevin Green