Katy Perry has reportedly been banned from China ahead of her scheduled performance at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show.
The highly-anticipated event is due to take place in Shanghai on Monday (20Nov17), with musical performances interspersing runway walks from some of the modelling industry’s top names.
Katy had been on the schedule but, according to sources, has now been banned from entering the country indefinitely. Apparently, while Katy was initially told gaining a visa wouldn’t be a problem, officials then reversed their opinion after learning of a controversial incident from 2015, when the Swish Swish singer donned a dress embellished with sunflowers for a performance in Taiwan’s capital Taipei. Katy’s ensemble quickly hit headlines due to the fact that many saw it as a pro-Taiwanese statement and an attempt to side with the 2014 Sunflower Student Movement, which protested the Cross-Strait Service Trade Agreement with mainland China.
Katy was also seen waving a Taiwanese flag during the concert, expressing her solidarity with the country, which has been feuding with China for years over its independence.
“Katy was initially granted a visa to perform at the VS show in Shanghai, then Chinese officials changed their minds and yanked her visa,” a source told the New York Post’s gossip column Page Six. “For every artist who wants to perform in China, officials comb through their social-media and press reports to see if they have done anything deemed to be offensive to the country. Maroon 5 was banned a few years ago because one band member wished the Dalai Lama happy birthday on Twitter.”
Katy is said to have been replaced on the schedule by former One Direction star Harry Styles.
She’s not the only famous face to have been banned from entering China ahead of the show though. Model Gigi Hadid took to Twitter on Thursday night (16Nov17) to tell fans she’d no longer be taking part in the show. And while she didn’t detail the reasons why, it’s believed that a video she posted on Instagram in February, in which she imitated a Buddha by squinting her eyes, was what made officials decide to bar her.
According to Page Six, Adriana Lima’s visa has been delayed due to an ongoing “diplomatic problem”, while less famous models including Julia Belyakova, Kate Grigorieva and Irina Sharipova are also said to have been denied entry to China.