• Austria's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Conchita fallout
Russia wants its own 'straight' Eurovision
Russia's Tolmachevy Twins - more family friendly? Photo: Wikimedia

Russia wants its own 'straight' Eurovision

AFP/The Local · 13 May 2014, 13:21

Published: 13 May 2014 13:21 GMT+02:00

Russian lawmakers have proposed creating their own version of Eurovision after Europe's premier song competition was won by a bearded Austrian drag queen who promotes gay rights.

Lawmakers in the Kremlin-controlled parliament picked up on swelling outrage in the socially conservative country at Conchita Wurst's weekend triumph by proposing a Russian-based contest in which family values prevail.

"The last Eurovision contest's results exhausted our patience," Communist Party deputy Valery Rashkin told the Interfax news agency.

"We must leave this competition. We cannot tolerate this endless madness."

Rashkin said he would push for the creation of a "Voice of Eurasia" songfest instead, which would primarily group nations from the former Soviet Union.

It was a suggestion picked up quickly by advisers to Belarus President Aleksander Lukashenko - a ruler who has overseen his isolated country for 20 years and was once branded by Washington as the last dictator of Europe.

"Conchita Wurst's Eurovision victory symbolizes the complete collapse of the European Union's moral values," the country's advisory Slavic Committee said in a statement.

"We do not need Europe!"

Eurovision is an annual contest in which millions of viewers from across the continent vote for their favourite performers and the points are allotted by nations in which the fans are based.

Wurst - a 25-year-old singer from Austria whose real name is Tom Neuwirth - received most points from countries such as Sweden and the Netherlands.

"Why am I not surprised?" state television contest commentator Dmitry Guberniev remarked when the Netherlands - famous for its social tolerance - awarded its "douze points" to the Austrian drag queen.

Russia's much more traditional love song performed by two 17-year-old identical twins placed seventh and was backed most heavily by its allies in Belarus and Azerbaijan.

Saturday's final in Copenhagen was shadowed by politics and public anger at Russia's intervention in Ukraine.

Story continues below…

Russia was booed a number of times during the final and the twins themselves were jeered while performing their semi-finals act.

A part of the Danish fans' anger appeared to stem from Russia's adoption last year of a harsh law banning the "propaganda" of homosexual relationships to minors.

One of the authors of the legislation proposed on Tuesday barring Conchita Wurst from even entering Russia.

Wurst's victory has also spawned an online protest campaign in which Russian men post pictures of themselves shaving on various social networks.

AFP/The Local (rosie.waites@thelocal.com)

Today's headlines
Holiday appeal for rape victim
The Theresienbad pool. Photo: Thomas Ledl/Wikimedia

Holiday appeal for rape victim
22 minutes ago

A campaign has started in Austria to send the 10-year-old boy raped by an asylum seeker on a holiday with his mum.

Suspect in au pair death refuses extradition
American Lauren Mann. Photo: Facebook/Private

Suspect in au pair death refuses extradition
44 minutes ago

An asylum seeker suspected of killing an American au pair who gave him sanctuary when Austrian officials wanted to deport him has refused to be extradited to face trial.

Asylum seekers given priority for hospital visits
Refugees arriving at Vienna's Westbahnhof station. File photo: Caritas

Asylum seekers given priority for hospital visits
1 hour ago

An admission by Austrian health officials that asylum seekers are given priority for hospital visits has been greeted by angry reaction.

The Local List
All you need to know about Faschingskrapfen
Photo: weareaustria.at

All you need to know about Faschingskrapfen
1 hour ago

Fasching, or carnival season, is an opportunity to eat as many Krapfen as you want. Here are four things to know about the jam-filled doughnuts before you give them up for Lent.

Police investigate 'Shariah police' carnival float
The controversial carnival float. Photo: Twitter/Streitapfel

Police investigate 'Shariah police' carnival float
2 hours ago

Following allegations of racism over an asylum seeker Panzer tank carnival float in Germany, police in Austria are now investigating a similar accusation over a Shariah police carnival float.

31 injured in Vienna apartment blaze
Photo: APA/OCZERET

31 injured in Vienna apartment blaze
3 hours ago

Thirty-one people were injured, two of them seriously, after a fire broke out in an apartment building in Vienna’s Favoriten district.

Austrian minister backs brake on benefits for EU migrants
Sebastian Kurz. Photo: ÖVP

Austrian minister backs brake on benefits for EU migrants
4 hours ago

Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz wants to implement British PM David Cameron's proposed changes to child support benefits in Austria.

Coffee House Owners' Ball hit by fraud scandal
Kaffeesiederball 2015. Photo: Gerhard Fally

Coffee House Owners' Ball hit by fraud scandal
1 day ago

The organiser of the Vienna Coffee House Owners' Ball has been forced to step down after a scandal involving thousands of euros that went missing from the ball’s funds.

Vienna man on trial for jihadist activities
Vienna regional court. File photo: Flickr/Sebastian Baryli

Vienna man on trial for jihadist activities
1 day ago

A 25-year-old suspected jihadist is appearing in court in Vienna, accused of having fought with an al-Qaeda affiliated group.

Mother of rape victim wants attacker jailed in Austria
The Theresienbad pool. Photo: Thomas Ledl/Wikimedia

Mother of rape victim wants attacker jailed in Austria
1 day ago

The mother of a ten-year-old boy who was raped at a public swimming pool in Vienna by an Iraqi refugee wants his attacker to serve a prison sentence in Austria, before being deported.

Sponsored Article
US taxes and FATCA: 'The time for hiding is over'
Lifestyle
Why looking good on the ski slopes has never been easier
Lifestyle
Live in Austria? You might develop some of these weird habits
National
How 'Silent Night' rules the carol world
Lifestyle
How a chance meeting on the slopes led to a new business
Lifestyle
How to make Christmas more than just about presents
Lifestyle
What it means to be human
Lifestyle
How to enjoy the Christmas season and avoid burn out
Technology
How a town became a green icon
Lifestyle
Why Austria has the world's best ski resort
Lifestyle
Let them eat cake!
Lifestyle
Top tips for partying like an Austrian
Lifestyle
Want to find Vienna's best Christmas markets?
Culture
Five places to learn how to cook Viennese cuisine
Lifestyle
How living in Austria will improve your lifestyle
Lifestyle
Backstage at the World Beard and Moustache Championship
Gallery
Up to 60,000 people welcomed refugees in Vienna
Culture
Can you spot an Austrian?
Lifestyle
Our pick of Vienna's best vegetarian restaurants
Analysis & Opinion
Italy's South Tyrol: where an identity crisis lingers
National
Lost on the way to sanctuary
Gallery
Crossing from Serbia into Croatia with thousands of refugees
2,507
jobs available