Eurovision winner Conchita Wurst: I was bullied for wearing a dress to school

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

Conchita Wurst says being bullied at school for wearing a dress was “very tough for me”.

The Eurovision winner told GT (Gay Times): “I would go to kindergarten in a skirt, and also to school.

“When I wanted to do it, my parents would just say ‘well, OK, we don’t have enough time discuss why he does this now’.

“From a very little age, the little kids, they don’t have words for the thing what is different about this boy.

“I realised that there was something different at about 11, and that I’m not like the other boys and of course I thought there was something wrong.

“The most difficult time started when we all turned teenagers. You have to struggle with yourself, with your body, and apparently you learn how to name a boy who is like little Tom. This is the time when it started to be very tough for me.”

Thomas “Tom” Neuwirth, better known by his drag stage persona Conchita Wurst, won the 2014 Eurovision Song Contest for Austria last month.

But several anti-LGBT Russian politicians were horrified by Wurst entering the competition and her subsequent victory.

Referring to the backlash Wurst said: “It’s so ridiculous! For me a perfect world would be when we don’t have to talk about sexuality, where you’re from, what you believe. Is this the worst thing in the mind of the politicians?

“They must have a very happy life, because actually we’re not talking about politics, we’re talking about the most normal thing in the world: the allowance to love who you want to love.

“But places like Russia giving me five points, it was a statement. In the Russian telephone ranking, I was on top. I think that’s a very big thing. Of course, I want to perform in Russia. To tell them that they are not alone. The whole community around the world is standing behind them. They have to trust that if they open their mouth, then we can change something.”

Tom Neuwirth describes himself as a gay man and uses female pronouns to describe his Wurst character, but male pronouns when referring to himself.

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