▲ Up
16:33 29-11-2015
MAIN АКИpress CA-News
About us On-line subscription
Bearded queen from Austria in Eurovision spotlight

Bishkek (AKIpress) - Conchita-Wurst-Austria-1 When Austria's entry takes the stage Thursday at the Eurovision Song Contest in Copenhagen, the spotlight will slowly reveal a figure with wide eyes, glossy painted lips, high cheekbones and a man's full dark beard, Kansas City reported.

Conchita Wurst – the alter ego of 25-year-old Austrian Thomas Neuwirth – already has shocked audiences by challenging stereotypes of masculine and feminine beauty with the song “Rise like a Phoenix”.

Pushing the boundaries of gender identity is nothing new at Europe's annual song contest – an extravaganza known for its eclectic love songs and pop tunes. But the backlash this year against Wurst highlights a rift between Europe's progressive liberal side and the traditional values.

There's been actually a lot of transsexuals, transvestites and drags in the Eurovision Song Contest, including Israel's 1998 winner Dana International, who had male-to-female gender reassignment surgery several years before competing.

Meanwhile, the annual competition is supposed to be completely removed from politics. Neither Russia's entry – teenage twins Anastasia and Maria Tolmachevy – nor Ukraine's Mariya Yaremchuk, whose routine includes a dancer running in a giant hamster wheel, allude to the recent tensions between Moscow and Kiev.

At Tuesday's semifinal, the audience booed when it was announced that the Tolmachevy twins had qualified for Saturday's final but cheered when Yaremchuk got into it too.

Bookmakers place Ukraine in the top 10 and Russia at the bottom.

The winner is picked by juries and television viewers across Europe. The final tally for each country is a 50/50 combination of the telephone votes and votes of a national jury. A country that received a good result in the telephone vote could still be left with no points in the overall tally if the jury gave its highest points to other contestants.

Contest watchers believe Wurst will advance from the second semifinal Thursday. Others considered strong contenders include Armenia's Aram MP3, who fuses a traditional piano ballad with contemporary dub step beats; a haunting melody with traditional sounds from Azerbaijan; a bluegrass tinged World War I homage from Malta and Hungary's New York-born singer Andras Kallay-Saunders, whose high-energy song about domestic violence could end up being a chart hit across the continent.

The competition is hosted by Denmark, the winner of last year's contest. Organizers say they expect 180 million television viewers this year.

16:06 08.05.2014
20:22 Over 150 cars left at Turkmen-Kazakh border for more than six months19:27 Kazakhstan urges Central Asian countries to consolidate anti-terrorist efforts18:53 Professional lyceums of Leilek district receive ADB’s 20 million soms assistance18:25 Russia to suspend visa free regime with Turkey from January 117:31 Six millionth Kyrgyzstani solemnly discharged from hospital16:08 Two-day OSCE-organized youth conference concluded in Bishkek14:52 Ex-Deputy PM Mamytov: World community should know whether Turkey has relations with IS14:10 New school built in Alamedin funded by Jerui – PM Sariyev13:44 Declaration-2014: Ex-Defense Minister Omuraliyev earned over 582 thousand soms in year12:09 19 police officers receive certificates of completion of training courses from Police Academy11:46 Turkey suspends flights over Syria after incident with Russian Su-2411:21 Residents of Kyzyl-Kiya send humanitarian aid to quake-affected people of Osh region10:43 Dushanbe hosts VI meeting of the deputy foreign ministers of Central Asian countries10:04 Prize fund of AFC Champions League increases to $4.5 mln, AFC Cup - to $1.5 mln09:40 Ministry of Justice holds seminar on conducting forensic examinations for law enforcement agencies of southern regions of Kyrgyzstan17:58 Speaker of Mongolian Parliament receives Russian Ambassador17:47 Morin khuur concert to be held this weekend in Ulaanbaatar17:33 Turkish SosyalBen Association holds special training for Mongolian children17:16 Ulaanbaatar builds new kindergarten17:04 Mongolia's Khentii Got Talent 2015 kicks off today
-5° C
+13° C
+13° C
+11° C
+15° C
exchange rates

© AKIpress News Agency - 2001-2015. All rights reserved
Republication of any material is prohibited without a written agreement with AKIpress News Agency. Any citation must be accompanied by a hyperlink to www.akipress.com.
Our address:
Moskovskaya str. 189, Bishkek, the Kyrgyz Republic
e-mail: english@akipress.org, akipressenglish@gmail.com;
Tel/Fax: +996(312)90-07-75