NPR logo

Pussy Riot's Nadya Tolokonnikova On Her New Anti-Trump Song

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/499498761/499710913" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
Pussy Riot's Nadya Tolokonnikova On Her New Anti-Trump Song

Music Interviews

Pussy Riot's Nadya Tolokonnikova On Her New Anti-Trump Song

Pussy Riot's Nadya Tolokonnikova On Her New Anti-Trump Song

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/499498761/499710913" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

"[Putin] created what we call in Russia an atmosphere of hatred," Nadya Tolokonnikova says. "And that's what Donald Trump is doing here right now." YouTube hide caption

toggle caption
YouTube

"[Putin] created what we call in Russia an atmosphere of hatred," Nadya Tolokonnikova says. "And that's what Donald Trump is doing here right now."

YouTube

Four years ago, the world learned the name Pussy Riot, a politically active Russian art collective whose members were all women. Members of that group staged a punk rock demonstration in a church in protest of Russian president Vladimir Putin and the Russian church's support of his presidential campaign.

Some members of the group, including founding Pussy Riot member Nadya Tolokonnikova, were arrested and charged with "hooliganism." They spent two years in prison, and during that time, Pussy Riot gained many supporters around the world. Some say their fame put pressure on Putin to release them.

But inside Russia, the protest movement is suffering, as some prominent opposition politicians have been killed. "A lot of Russian people who would consider political action for themselves, they think right now they would be killed," Tolokonnikova says. "Because it's not just words right now."

While she still creates art in protest of Vladimir Putin and his policies, Tolokonnikova has recently set her sights on Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump. She released a new song and music video called "Make America Great Again." (The video is here, but be aware: It is intense and includes scenes and imagery that will be disturbing to many viewers.)

Tolokonnikova says the U.S. presidential election is important for her as a Russian citizen. "American politics influence the world politics," she says. "In a lot of ways, [the U.S.] really interferes in other countries' politics. I'm not discussing is it a good or bad thing, but it is a thing, so that's why it will influence everybody else's lives outside America."

Tolokonnikova spoke with NPR's David Greene about Donald Trump and the future of Pussy Riot. Hear the full interview at the audio link.