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Conchita receives invites and death threats

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Conchita receives invites and death threats
Conchita Wurst. Photo: APA
11:03 CEST+02:00
Since her Eurovision victory in Copenhagen Conchita Wurst has become the toast of Austria, a symbol for tolerance, and an icon for a more open world - but she has also received hate mail and death threats.
The newly crowned 'Queen of Europe' has been bombarded with invitations - to perform on tour with Lady Gaga, appear on the Oprah Winfrey Show, meet with Hollywood bosses to discuss plans for a biopic, and sing at the New York Gay Pride Parade.
 
Today Wurst is in London as a guest on the UK's most popular TV programme - The Graham Norton Show - watched by five million people. Later she'll meet Elton John who is apparently eager to record a song with her. The British tabloid The Sun is reportedly paying 40,000 for an exclusive interview.
 
This Sunday, the 25-year-old and 30 of her friends and supporters will be the guests of Chancellor Werner Faymann and Minister of Culture, Josef Ostermeyer at the Federal Chancellor's office. Following the reception, Conchita will perform for fans in Vienna's Ballhausplatz.
 
But not everyone is so enamoured by Austria's bearded drag queen and her highly political winning ballad, Rise like a Phoenix.
 
Along with the adulation, Conchita has received thousands of hate mails, including death threats.
 
The Facebook page, No to Conchita, has 37,000 fans. Common postings include: "Away with him or her", "Get this rogue off the streets at last", "It's time for the total extinction of the human race", and "It's disgusting and unnatural". 
 
Postings on the site of an Egyptian rapper in Graz include: "That's just a freak".
 
All hell has broken out on Twitter and political websites reports the Vienna tabloid, Österreich. Over 2000 people commented on right-wing FPÖ leader HC Strache's message of congratulation to Wurst. The tone of the reactions were of overwhelming disbelief and bewilderment. Previously he had called her act "ridiculous".
 
Ewald Stadler, Austria'a REKOS (Reform Conservatives) candidate, declared he was "embarrassed by the win. Vicarious embarrassment has taken on a new tone". 
 
Internationally too, Wurst has met with hate and malice. Conservative Turkish parliamentarian Volkan Bozkir tweeted 'We're glad we are no longer part of the Song Contest'. His message was retweeted thousands of times.
 
In Serbia, a TV presenter referred to Wurst as a "circus horse" in a "freak show". 
 
The worst of the Wurst bashing however came from Russia, where the ultra-nationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky declared, "There are no longer men and women, there is only it." 
 
Wurst remains undeterred, stating in an interview that "these attacks only make me stronger". 
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