Conchita Wurst was the big winner at the Amadeus Austrian Music Awards last night, where she won three Awards – ‘Best Video’ for Heroes, ‘Best Song’ for Rise Like a Phoenix and ‘Female Singer of the Year’. Three awards out of a total of 16 given during the evening, and the winner in all three categories she was nominated in.
When her name was announced, like every winner before her, Conchita Wurst got up from her seat and headed up the steps to the stage. But so many things about her and her wins were different than anyone else’s, I wonder how she managed to get up there and still hold it all together.
Because here is the thing about Conchita Wurst winning three Amadeus Music Awards and why, every time her name was announced, she looked almost emotionless.
These awards were huge for her. The first ones she’s ever really been given. And, not just awards for her music, which is significant in itself, but also a complete validation of who she is.
Which is why, when her name was announced as Amadeus Award winner of ‘Video of the Year’, from the way she acted, a casual observer may have thought she couldn’t care less. No smile, no look of surprise, hardly any visible emotion at all. Just a swift walk up to the stage to get her award.
But, I saw something different. I saw someone so used to having to control what she shows to the world (because in the past, if she didn’t, some abusive bully would use it against her), that now when something happens that means this much to her, for a second she switches off.
That switch off gives her chance to collect herself, and be in control by the time she hits the stage and has to speak. Which is exactly how she was for her first award last night. Calm, poised and graciously thanking everyone for the award and for their attention.
Her second award of the night, (the one for ‘Rise Like a Phoenix‘ as ‘Song of the Year’), however, threw her for such a loop she was struggling to maintain control. Particularly as she got a long and loud standing ovation when she got up there.
That’s because that song, and what happened because of it, is the world to her. It’s the song that helped her win the Eurovision Song Contest. It’s the song that, from the minute she first heard it, launched her dream and then gave that dream wings. And it’s the song that allowed her to have what she now has — the chance to live how she always wanted to live, and to be someone who is respected — and it’s the song she will be known for, for the rest of her life.
So you don’t think she wanted to win that award? At that second in time, probably more than anything.
And how was she when she was up on stage to say thank you for being awarded ‘Song of the Year’? Fighting back tears, while looking absolutely stunned.
Because just this time last year? She was a little over a month away from the Eurovision Song Contest, and still the object of ridicule in the eyes of half of Austria.
Now, however, she’s the new heroine of that conservative little country. The woman who brought Eurovision back to Vienna after 48 years, and someone who is now as admired and respected as she once was vilified.
And I don’t care how in control Conchita Wurst always looks, that kind of change takes years to get used to. And years before you can stop worrying that it won’t all go away.
By the time her final award (Female Singer of the Year) was announced, she had gathered herself enough again to give her manager, René, a detached hug, (which proved to me she was probably having an out of body experience by then, as Conchita Wurst does not do detached hugs, particularly with people she cares about). But, by the time she got up on stage and was handed her trophy, most vestiges of that control had slipped away.
She tried to get it back by making a joke about ‘Female Singer of the Year’ and, while the audience laughed, she struggled for composure. But that lip biting thing she always does right before she starts to cry was her dead giveaway about how she felt (and something some in the Austrian news media noticed as well, as that was the photo they went with when writing about Conchita Wurst sweeping the awards).
Having watched all this, however, and seeing how beautifully she handled everything and how lovely she was, despite the intense control, I also have to add, through all of those enormous highs and huge waves of emotion Conchita Wurst experienced last night (as well as gave a live performance of her latest single ‘You Are Unstoppable‘ I might add), she even surprised me.
Because to have such poise and grace through that, shows her to be an even stronger person than I have always thought she was.
She was calm and dignified, elegant and beautiful, and such a ‘Weltstar’, that as much as I think I understand her and know why she acts the way she acts, I still am in awe as to how she does it.
So, that’s why I’m saying to the Austrian Amadeus Music Awards and to Austria at large, you should all pay even more attention than you already have. Because, as much as this has been an amazing year for Conchita Wurst, culminating with three Amadeus Awards and a soon-to-be starring role at Eurovision 2015, this is just the beginning for her.
Just as I predicted to a friend yesterday, when I told him without a doubt she would win all three awards, I have always known without the same doubt Conchita Wurst will eventually be a world superstar.
So, when it comes to accepting awards for your music, my lovely Ms. Wurst? Huge congratulations for the three you got last night, so very well deserved, and huge admiration for how lovely you were throughout.
But I am giving you advanced warning, you’d probably better start processing how winning those awards actually feels, as you are going to be experiencing that a whole lot more. I’m sure of it.
And, finally, because I’m almost always so lovely to you with my often elaborate words, I think I’m allowed one moment of being slightly less civilized. So I’m going to use my one unsophisticated moment to add this.
That ass you had in that gown last night, Ms. Wurst? Incredible. Just sayin’.
Special Note: Conchita Wurst’s debut album ‘Conchita’ will be released on May 15th, 2015. You can currently pre-order it at iTunes.
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