Archive for Eurovision

The Russian Orthodox Church Condemns Eurovision

Posted in LGBT with tags , , on May 15, 2014 by telescoper


A Victory for Diversity

Posted in Beards, LGBT with tags , , , , , on May 11, 2014 by telescoper

I didn’t watch the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest last night, but my Twitter feed was full of comments by people who did. That’s how I found out who won!


Conchita Wurst, Winner of the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest

I don’t know what the song was like, but that doesn’t matter at all; the Eurovision Song Contest isn’t about the songs at all. What is important is that Conchita Wurst‘s victory sends out a clear message that there is a world out there that is happy to embrace diversity. Interviewed after the voting, Conchita said “I’m just a singer in a fabulous dress, with great hair and a beard”. That sums it all up, really.

I agree wholeheartedly with the official statement of the Beard Liberation Front:

The Beard Liberation Front the informal network of beard wearers has welcomed the win for Austria’s Conchita Wurst in the Eurovision Song Contest as a victory for a diverse Europe over transphobia and pogonophobia.

The BLF has long campaigned for the right of people to be able to dress and appear as they want.

There will no doubt be those who mock Conchita Wurst (original name Thomas Neuwirth), even within the gay community. But it’s important to remember that the Stonewall Riots of 1969 that galvanised the gay rights movement in the United States into action, paving the way for example to Equal Marriage, began as a  fightback against heavy-handed policing that was predominantly led by drag queens. It takes courage to stand up for the right to be different, and in that respect Conchita is an example to inspire us all.

UPDATE: Here’s the official video made in advance of the contest

P.S. I’m pretty sure that this means that Beard of the Year 2014 is now a foregone conclusion….



Posted in Opera with tags , , , on May 29, 2010 by telescoper

Tonight’s the night of the dreadful Eurovision Song Contest, which I won’t be watching, but I thought I’d take the opportunity to post a reminder of the days when Eurovision was, at least occasionally, much classier. Here’s a live Eurovision broadcast from 1957, featuring Maria Callas. The aria is Casta Diva, from Norma by Vincenzo Bellini, a masterpiece of Italian Bel Canto opera. Gorgeous.