100 best things Conchita Wurst has done since she won Eurovision, (#70-61)
I’m focusing Part 4 of the ‘100 best things Conchita has done since she won Eurovision‘ mainly on things that have come about due to the massive changes we have seen in Conchita and in her career in the last three years.
Whether that is deciding to upload videos of covers of very famous songs — covers she does as well, if not better, than the original artists did — releasing a political statement that took quite a lot of courage to record, or because her alter ego Tom Neuwirth decided he was sick to the back teeth of always being in the background, and it was now time to come to the forefront and accept some of the praise.
All of them are fabulously done (well, what else would you expect from Conchita), and all stand out from all the thousands of lovely things we have been able to experience since she catapulted into the international arena after Eurovision.
70 — Conchita’s cover of Rag’N’Bone Man’s ‘Human‘
While Conchita was a judge on the German TV show ‘It Takes 2‘, she also decided to cover a few of the songs some of the singers were performing in the show.
Each song was filmed by her social media manager, André Karsai, and then uploaded to YouTube. Each video was beautifully done in black and white, and all of them turned out to be individual little art pieces in their own right.
That being said, Conchita’s cover of Rag’N’Bone Man’s ‘Human‘ was my favorite. And that’s because the way she sang this song, and the way it was filmed, changed a song that was all about power into one that was poignant and sad. (You can read more about my thoughts on the video here, and why I think Conchita’s version is so extra specially lovely).
And that deep voice, while I wouldn’t want to hear her sing like that all the time, for this particular song it really works.
Watch it above, and luxuriate in the incredible dramatic-ness of it all.
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69 — Conchita’s style shots
One thing I think is really great about Conchita as she has changed over the last three years is that she has pulled her fans more and more into her world, to get a backstage look at what her career involves, if you will.
One of these is the way she allows her stylist Thomas Reinberger to upload photographs to his Instagram account of her trying on different designer clothes for future performances and appearances.
Photographs that show not only how gorgeous Conchita is, but also how she pretty much looks stunningly stylish in anything she wears.
Check out Reinberger’s Instagram account for all the photos the two of them have taken. One of my current favorites is the one above.
68 — Conchita’s Facebook Live chat and premiere of ‘Blue Bloom’
While I have already put Conchita performing her self-written song ‘Blue Bloom‘ at Ronacher in Vienna further back in the list of ‘100 best things Conchita has done‘, I want to add the first time we heard the song further up on the list.
That was during a Facebook Live chat when, right from the beginning, it was obvious Conchita was incredibly nervous about something as she was even ramblier than normal, and spent just as much time texting her friends on her phone as she did talking to her fans.
The reason for her nervousness turned out to be Conchita singing the first song she had ever written live for her fans on Facebook, and being accompanied on guitar by Viennese-based singer Maria Burger.
A performance that was one of the sweetest I have seen her do, particularly as she looked like she was about to jump out of her skin she was so hyped about it, yet she still managed to sing a gorgeous version of the song.
And, while ‘Blue Bloom‘ itself will probably never be one of my favorite Conchita songs (well, I do love the Ronacher version), and because I like another song she has written since much more, it is still a beautiful song and especially beautifully written considering she had never actually written one before.
67 — Conchita sings ‘That’s What I Am‘ at Wer singt für Österreich?
Conchita rarely sings ‘That’s What I Am‘ , the song she sang when she tried to be chosen as Austria’s representative for the Eurovision Song Contest back in 2012, but she sang it in February, 2016, on the televised Austrian Eurovision national selection competition Wer singt für Österreich?
And it’s a particularly lovely version of ‘That’s What I Am‘, as she not only made it more of a light jazz song, it was also the first time we really got to see her performing with her new band. A band she would soon be taking on the road for a mini-tour later in 2016.
Plus, what was even nicer about this performance and her comments afterwards was just how excited she was about her upcoming tour, she just grinned from ear to ear. Awwwwww.
So looking forward to tonight’s opening of @wienerfestwochen with @viennasymphony #orchestra, @lylitmusic, @russkaja_official and many more great artists. Come join us at 21:20 on Rathausplatz if you’re in Vienna, or watch us live on @ORF. 🎼🎻🎤 #festwochen #eröffnung #wien #vienna #orchestra #live #music #concert 📸 @andrekarsai
66 — Conchita reinventing herself
This is something that is connected to everything Conchita does, and it is how she constantly reinvents herself so she is always growing and changing.
And to be able to do this on a continual basis takes someone who knows themselves very well, is incredibly disciplined, extremely creative and someone who obviously evaluates everything they ever do to see if it is working or not.
I honestly cannot explain any better what I think about Conchita reinventing herself than I did here in an article I wrote early last year.
But I do think it is one of the most important things she does, as it means not only do her fans never get a chance to get bored, but neither does she. And it means she always grows.
65 — Conchita’s music video for ‘Heroes‘
The first real music video Conchita did (other than the awful one ORF put together as her official video when she entered Eurovision) was her music video for ‘Heroes‘, the second single from her debut album Conchita.
Conchita came up with the entire concept for the video herself, and it’s a concept that looks at the basic innocence of people, and why we should always look inside them when it comes to their actions, so we can understand more why they do what they do. And then, just maybe, we can empathize.
This is the article I wrote about the video when it first came out. It’s now a video I have seen a hundred times, see something different in it every time I watch it, and never grown tired of as everything about it is just so superbly done.
Since its release on YouTube in late 2014, it has amassed more than two million views.
64 — Conchita as ‘Eva‘ in Die Pinguine aus Madagascar
In 2014, Conchita was given the task of voicing ‘Eva’ the snowy owl in the German language version of the animated film Penguins of Madagascar.
And, while no, I never actually did see the film, it was still wonderful to me that she was chosen to voice the character out of all the German-speaking artists who could have done it.
Wonderful that she was chosen for what is essentially a children’s movie, and just as wonderful that she proved she was so multi-talented, she could even do this.
63 — An interview with Conchita at the Göteborg Book Fair in Sweden
While I have loved every interview Conchita has done, as each one has allowed me to learn just a little bit more about her, one of my favorites was and still is an interview Conchita gave at the Göteborg Book Fair in Sweden.
Because it was in this interview that, for the first time, she actually admitted that the bullying she (well he, Tom Neuwirth) received when she was growing up still stays with her.
As, in every other interview before this, she always shrugged off the bullying as if it was really “not too bad”. A sentiment I never believed for a second and, to this day, I think was probably far worse than she will ever let on.
But in Göteborg, when the interviewer asked her what being bullied “does to a person”, for the first time she was incredibly honest.
“Well you get insecure. Obviously. Because, as I said before, I thought there was something wrong with me. That causes insecurity because you think, okay, I have to blend in, and it’s exhausting. And people just have so many little tweaks and ways to hurt you because of your insecurity. And that just hurt.”
“And mine was, compared to the stories of others (in the LGBTI community), not that painful. But it was hard for me because they would call me names and I would not be able to go to the restroom during the breaks in school because I knew everyone would be in the hallway and I didn’t want to meet anyone. I just wanted to blend in. And till this day, if I’m honest, sometimes I would prefer to not be that exposed.
I mean, I’m very self-confident, and I know what I do, and I love what I do and I know because of the fact that I’m not hurting anyone and I’m respectful, I’m allowed to be who I want to be. But, you know, the past stays, it’s a long way till you get rid of all this trash people put on you.”
You can read more of my thoughts about it, though, here. Because I still think it’s one of the most important interviews she has done.
You can watch the interview in the video below (and yes, even though it doesn’t have a cover photo, the video is still working).
62 — Conchita’s ‘White Rose‘ political video
Conchita released her first ever political video back in 2016, just prior to the first Austrian presidential election (there were two that year in Austria after the losing candidate, Norbert Hofer, demanded a new election after he lost the first one due to so-called ‘voting irregularities’ — he still lost after the second election, and by a bigger margin).
And the video is fascinating not only due to what she says, but also due to her wearing a massive ‘white rose’ on the lapel of her jacket. Something she would never ever normally wear, and something I knew had an important meaning the first time I saw it.
So I dug a little bit online and found the story of the ‘White Rose‘, and how it was used by a German non-violent political activist group against Hitler and the Nazi Party during the Second World War.
I immediately knew why she was wearing that rose, and what it was supposed to signify for Austria.
You can read all about the ‘White Rose‘ and what Conchita meant by it in an article I wrote (it is fascinating).
Just suffice it to say, it took some balls for Conchita to record and release that video, and I was proud to see her do it.
61 — Conchita becomes ‘authentic’
I have said over and over again to anyone who would listen that, during the first year and a half after Conchita Wurst’s Eurovision win, while I thought she was lovely, personality-wise she was not as ‘real’ as she could have been simply because she was hiding who she really was.
That all started to change in early 2016, when Tom Neuwirth decided he was going to have a lot more say in how Conchita looked and who she was, and that boy suddenly started muscling his way to the forefront.
So much so, Conchita began to change quite quickly.
The dresses slowly started to disappear to be replaced by mainly pants. Suddenly there were muscles where there hadn’t been muscles before. And a bare obviously male chest was in more photographs and TV appearances than not.
And as Tom Neuwirth began to re-appear, the coolest thing began to happen. Conchita became more authentic.
Now, when she was interviewed, she would often be a little less polite and have more of an undercurrent of ‘attitude’. An attitude I loved, because it made her far less bland and much more interesting.
Soon after, she started to become a mix of ‘all boy and all girl’. A mix that has progressed from then on, until we now have the Conchita we have today. Part girl with the long wig and the make up, but most decidedly ‘boy’ with the untucked, hairy legged, hairy chested rest of her.
Read ‘Tom Neuwirth Steps Up To The Plate‘ to find out why I think what she did and what she continues to do is so damned important, even though I still sometimes struggle with it,
That brings us to the end of the latest part of the ‘100 best things Conchita has done since winning Eurovision’. I will be back on Thursday (not tomorrow!) with part five.
Meanwhile, if you missed them, you can check out the first three parts here:
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