Andrew W.K. was all set to show Bahrainis the "power of positive partying," until those buzzkills over at the State Department actually found out about it — then cancelled his would-be trip to the U.S. Embassy in Manama.
Actually, W.K. kind of blew the embassy's invitation out of proportion when he announced Friday his plans to visit the Gulf state as a "Cultural Ambassador of Partying." When contacted by DCist's Benjamin R. Freed, a State Department spokesperson said W.K. had never been designated a "cultural ambassador," and that artists and cultural figures are routinely asked to appear at embassies around the world. Not to be a party-pooper or anything, but W.K. may have gotten ahead of himself when he wrote:
This is a tremendous invitation. I'm very thankful to the Department of State for giving me the opportunity to visit a place I've never been before. And I feel very privileged and humbled by the chance to represent the United States of America and show the good people of Bahrain the power of positive partying. I can hardly wait for this adventure!
Sites like Pitchfork, Vulture, and even Big Hollywood all picked up the news that W.K. would party hard in the Kingdom of Bahrain. But Brokelyn's David Colon was skeptical, so he decided to make some calls. The first press person he reached at State hadn't heard anything about W.K.'s trip. But later Colon was told by a State Department spokesperson:
Andrew WK had been invited by the US Embassy in Bahrain to be part of a cultural speakers program, but upon further review, the program was canceled because it did not meet the standards of the State Department.