The victory of the stunning Conchita Wurst at the 2014 contest was a breath of fresh air for many Eurovision fans as she championed tolerance and acceptance on the international stage.
By
Genevieve Dwyer

13 May 2015 - 5:06 PM  UPDATED 13 May 2015 - 5:35 PM

Indeed the world took such a liking to the bearded lady (aka Thomas Neuwirth) that she’s been a very busy diva ever since. Here’s a look at some of the things Conchita has been up to in the past 12 months as one of the most successful artists ever to crossover from the Eurovision stage to the global stage! 

 

1. She made her modelling debut for John Paul Gaultier

Conchita’s celebrity experience was primarily singing and performing-related, but when she made her debut modelling appearance, she did it at no less than Paris Fashion Week (yeah girl!), modelling haute couture for designer and LGBTQI-icon John Paul Gaultier.

Incidentally, Gaultier is known for being one of Eurovision’s biggest champions, having designed costumes for Eurovision’s first transgender winner, Dana International, as well as the corset worn by burlesque dancer Dita Von Teese when she accompanied Germany’s 2009 entrant onstage, and several other entrants’ outfits.

Since her first catwalk strut, Conchita has modelled Givenchy clothing for fashion legend and photographer Karl Lagerfeld in the new tome by France's preeminent fashion editor Carine Roitfeld, CR Fashion Book

 

2. Conchita hung Paris Fashion Week

With a couture show under her belt, it now seems Conchita has become one of the high-profile celebrities lucky enough to get to grace the "fashion elite" front row. Conchita shared this Paris Fashion Week snap featuring internationally respected fashion editor Suzy Menkes earlier this year.  

 

2. She appeared on the Graham Norton show

Conchita has in fact made countless international media appearances since her win, but her appearance on UK Eurovison host (and fellow LGBTQI icon) Graham Norton’s night time chat show was quite the coup. Broadcast across much of the English speaking world, this gave Conchita’s profile a major boost among the international crowd. 

 

4. Conch attended Golden Globes

Conchita walked the red carpet at 2015 Golden Globe Awards alongside the likes of Julianne Moore, George and Amal Clooney and Jennifer Lopez. She was invited to attend the event as part of the Austrian delegation there to support nominee and countryman, Christoph Waltz.

 

5. Released her first post-Eurovision single

Conchita debuted her first post-Eurovision track 'Heroes' in November 2014 and has since been focussing on her self-titled album, on which it features. She also released her second single 'You are unstoppable' in March this year and launched her debut record on a visit to Australia earlier this month!

 

6. She headlined London Pride

Conchita performed as the headline act at Trafalgar Square for London’s LGBT Pride Parade, where she was introduced by none other than Gandalf, aka LGBTQI icon Ian McKellan. Ian said in his introduction, “Show business has always led the way when it comes to the freedom to be yourself. So Conchita is following in the footsteps of our predecessors. There is a long tradition of outrageousness and confidence that performers embody, and that has an enormous impact. It clears the way for others to dare to be themselves. She has done just that.” Go you guys!

 

7. Ms Wurst performed and addressed the United Nations

International gigs don’t get much more impressive than performing for the United Nations, yet that’s exactly what Conchita did in front of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon at the United Nations Office in Vienna in November 2014. 

Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon called Conchita’s Eurovision win an “electrifying moment of human rights education.” 

He continued by saying, “She confounds people’s preconceived ideas of gender and sexuality – and she appeals to them to accept her as she is.”

 

8. Performed at an anti-discrimination for the European Parliament

It seems Conchita has become quite the anti-discrimination ambassador for people all around the world and isn’t afraid of politicising her music or herself. Another significant example of this was her Brussels performance in front of EU parliament for an anti-discrimination event. Advocating for equal rights, Conchita said, “I’m not a politician, only a singer... As I always say, you don’t have to love me, but you have to respect that I’m here. I will give everything I have to support those who want [tolerance]. Sex, colour and background should no longer play a role.”

 

9. She took to the stage with Dana International

For the Eurovision’s Greatest Hits show, held in London in April, 2015, to mark the 60th anniversary of the contest, Conchita performed alongside fellow gender-challenging performer, 1998’s winner and transgender icon Diva International. 

The performance marked an important moment for unity, respect and tolerance but mainly it was just ridiculously fabulous because they performed ABBA’s Waterloo and were joined by all the other greatest hits artists, including hard rockers Lordi!

 

Semi-Final 1 Friday 22 May | Semi-Final 2 Saturday 23 May | Grand Final Sunday 24 May