The bearded transgender winner of the Eurovision Song Contest, performs outside the European Parliament. Rough cut (no reporter narration)
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Austrian Conchita Wurst, the 2014 winner of the Eurovision Song Contest, performed outside the European Parliament on Wednesday (October 8) in support of a continent-wide fight against homophobia. Members of the European Parliament from five different political groups invited the singer to perform in support of a report passed in February that calls for an EU roadmap against homophobia and discrimination based on sexual orientation. European Parliament Vice-President and Austrian Green MEP Ulrike Lunacek drafted the report, and also organized Wednesday's event as part of her campaign to protect the rights of the LGBT (Lesbian Gay Bi Trans) community within member states. Wurst, who is popularly known as the "bearded lady," stressed the need to prevent discrimination against same-sex partnerships in a news conference that accompanied her performance. "The right to love who you want is such a human thing. And everybody wants to live in freedom and peace, and without fear. And I don't, I don't know why still people deny that. I just don't, I just don't get it, and this is for all the politicians out there," she said. Hundreds of fans endured rain and a biting breeze to watch Wurst perform some of her personal favorite songs, including Cher's "Believe" and her own "Rise Like a Phoenix," the tune that clinched her victory at the Eurovision Song Contest earlier this year. The Danish organizers of the Eurovision Song Contest promoted tolerance as a main theme of this year's event, making Wurst's win especially symbolic for her supporters. Wurst's Eurovision performance was watched by a global TV audience of about 180 million in 45 countries. Austria's first Eurovision winner since 1966, the country welcomed her home with a heroine's reception.