AUSTRIA – She stunned the world to take out the Eurovision song contest with a soaring power ballad in 2014. Conchita Wurst’s Rise Like A Phoenix earned Austria a whopping 290 points with its themes of transformation and rebirth, clocking up more than 13 million views on YouTube in the years since. Four years on, the “bearded lady” who is a stage persona of 29-year-old Austrian Tom Neuwirth, still feels the need to make it clear her performance is “no joke” after being forced to reveal her HIV status under threats of blackmail from an ex-partner.
“I feel I need to prove myself each and every time [because] I’m a drag act,” she told the BBC ahead of the 2018 Eurovision to be held this Saturday in Lisbon.
“It’s easy to say, ‘This is just a joke.’ You know, the bearded lady? And I feel the need to smash it with every performance just because I want to be clear this is not a joke.”
It’s a stark admission from the star who created her alter ego in 2006 as a way of projecting confidence on stage.
Last month, she was forced to use every ounce of it in a personal Instagram post disclosing she was HIV-positive and had been for many years, which she described as freeing her from the “sword of Damocles” above her head.
“This is actually irrelevant to the public, but an ex-boyfriend threatens me to go public with this private information, and I will not give anyone the right to frighten me and influence my life in the future,” she wrote, saying she has been in medical treatment and is unable to pass on the virus.
Conchita said she did not want to go public for fear of how it would impact her family and friends, believing that the information is only relevant to those “with whom sexual contact is an option”.
But she decided “coming out is better than being outed,” saying: “I hope to build up courage and take another step against the stigmatisation of people who have become infected by HIV, either through their own behaviour or through no fault of their own.”
AUSTRIA 🇦🇹 Cesár Sampson, third in the Eurovision Song Contest 2018, clarified the controversy with Doron Medalie, composer of “Toy”: “He turned to me and said: ‘We love you.'” Following the announcement of Netta Barzilai’s victory, singer Cesár Sampson, Austria’s representative, tried to congratulate the singer, having been barred by Doron Medalie, composer of the winning theme. The images were transmitted live, and the controversy was established in social networks.
Three weeks after the Grand Final, Cesár Sampson used social networks to explain the whole situation: “I’ve known Doron since 2016. He was one of the first to congratulate me when it was announced that he would represent Austria and was also the first to congratulate “said the singer, noting that the composer, who was recently involved in a controversy in the Israeli newspapers, acted with bad intentions in the Final of the event.
It was not his fault … The place where the delegation was going to be totally restricted to the winning entourage.There were extra bodyguards around the artist … They simply protected the artists’ Netta. “Doron turned to me and said,” We love you “That’s all that happened … I had not talked about it … because there was nothing to talk about.”
In the meantime Doron Medalie apologised to Netta over his recent comments with which he claimed two be the true winner of Eurovision instead of the Israeli singer. “I know that you do not want me to apologize to you, but I beg your pardon for this whole thing.”
AUSTRIA – It became known that Cesár Sampson’s entry “Nobody But You” was originally submitted to BBC for the UK national selection. Obviously the song was rejected by BBC as wee never saw it competing in the national final. Austria though accepted the song and selected Cesár Sampson internally with that song and they were right as the song was qualified to the Grand Final as we all know last Tuesday. The revelation took place by BBC itself.
By the way, Cesár Sampson was last night at the Euroclub. Get a glimpse of his performance below
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