The Eurovision Song Contest is inherently camp. And so, it’s no wonder some songs specifically target the massive LGBTI audience.
But what are the songs to watch out for with LGBTI themes this year?
Eurovision Song Contest 2019 – LGBTI songs
France – Bilal Hassani’s Roi
When Bilal Hassani made his first TV appearance on The Voice Kids, he sang Conchita Wurst’s Rise Like A Phoenix.
Will history repeat itself?
The 19-year-old gay and gender-fluid Moroccan won a massive majority of the public vote to represent France.
While he’s faced homophobia online, he’s standing strong.
Roi has a lot of lyrics celebrating equality and empowerment.
North Macedonia – Tamara Todevskia’s Proud
It shouldn’t be surprising that a song with a title like Proud is having an impact with LGBTI audiences.
Proud’s video features many diverse women – including gay and trans women.
The song promotes body identity, mental health and LGBTI equality.
Portugal – Conan Osíris’ Telemoveis (Mobile Phones)
Conan Osíris likes to defy definition.
A former sex shop worker, he is not your average Eurovision performer.
He mixes fado with digital dancehall, metal and hip hop. While he doesn’t discuss his sexuality, he makes an effort to work with a lot of gay and trans musicians and artists. Rehearsals for the song, about Mobile Phones, looks very queer indeed.
Iceland – Hatari’s Hatrid Mun Sigra (Hatred Will Prevail)
Hatari, a queer BDSM punk band from Reykjavik, is unlike anything we’ve see before.
Formed in 2015, Hatari consists of three members. The group is Klemens Nikulásson Hannigan, Matthías Tryggvi Haraldsson and Einar Hrafn Stefánsson.
‘Some of our fans in Iceland are gimps at heart,’ Hannigan said.
Instead of boycotting, Hatari is probably one of the most vocal critics of Israel – the host nation – and its treatment of Palestinians.
‘It’s so absurd to be in this contest … and everyone is super polite; it’s all about the music and everybody loves each other,’ Haraldsson told The Guardian.
‘And to be in that bubble a day after witnessing apartheid in action just an hour’s drive away is the contradiction that we want to be aware oft.’
United Kingdom – Michael Rice’s Bigger Than Us
Michael Rice, the UK’s entry, has a LGBTI storyline in his video.
Starring his younger brother as himself, it tells the story of a young friendship is torn apart because of hatred for same-sex parents.
‘It’s a tearjerker, a proper story!’ Rice tells Gay Star News.
The message to me, this song, it represents love and uniting people. Especially with everything going in Brunei, politics, Brexit – it’s “push it aside for a second”.
He added: ‘I have a lot of gay friends who have really struggled coming out themselves.’
The Eurovision Song Contest semi finals are on 14 May, 16 May and the grand final is on 18 May.