Saturday, 20. September 2014
02. 06. 14. - 15:00
By Kathryn Quinn,
Austria's Eurovision star Conchita Wurst stole the show at this year's star studded Life Ball Celebration held this weekend in the Austrian capital of Vienna.
Stars flocked to the City Hall where partygoers dressed in elaborate outfits and a lot of body paint rubbed shoulders with stars such as former US President Bill Clinton, Latin singer Ricky Martin, actor Billy Zane, singer Leona Lewis, performer Courtney Love, singer Conchita Wurst and many more stars at Europe's biggest charity event.
The opening ceremony watched by more than 40,000 people in the city centre featured performances by Christina Perry and Ricky Martin but Conchita Wurst stole the show and was greeted with whoops of applause by the audience when she performed her Eurovision winning song 'Rise Like a Phoenix'.
Wurst said: "It's a very special feeling for me, and I am extremely happy."
And she made many others happy too. Legendary fashion designer Jean Paul Gaultier said about Conchita: "Conchita is amazing, fantastic, the best of this years styling! I love her, she is the real thing."
The mayor of Vienna who opened the festivities said: "I want to thank Conchita Wurst. The message which we got from the Eurovision Song Contests represents a future we want to see."
Alongside the performances guests were memorised by a fashion show presented by L'uomo Vogue which featured Carmen Carrera, Lindsay Lohan and Courtney Love and many more and outfits from Vivienne Westwood, Jean Paul Gaultier and Vivenchy.
The City Hall was decorated head to toe under this year's motto 'Garden of Earthly Delights' and the guests followed this to a tee, with guests partying the night away under the motto "Love is a bloom growing anywhere".
As Clinton opened his speech he said: "I feel very under-dressed here."
But the Life Ball also carries a serious message, the event raises money for AIDS research and this message is not forgotten in the celebrations. This year's Crystal of Hope Award was presented to the project SWAP in Kenya by Marcia Cross and Billy Zane. SWAP - the Safe Water and AIDS Project organisation based in Western Kenya that engages Community Health Promoters to promote health and door to door sales of health and hygiene products.
Organiser Gery Keszler gave a speech on behalf of charity Aids Life and Bill Clinton a long time supporter of the charity gave a speech on behalf of CHAI – the Clinton Health Access Initiative.
Clinton said: "Amongst all the joy of this evening: the determination of every person we are here to give every child a better chance."
The ball had drawn criticism for using posters featuring a nude transgender model, Carmen Carrera. Photographer David LaChapelle designed two versions, showing Carrera with either male or female genitalia, along with the slogan: "I am Adam - I am Eve - I am me."
But Life Ball organiser Gery Keszler as well as LaChapelle said the poster was intended to provoke discussion of acceptance and this it certainly did.
Carmen Carrera added: "If someone has felt offended, then I am sorry. But I think it is important to show that there is more than just male or female in this world. That is my message."
The art work was auctioned off at the event and brought in 180,000 Euros for the charity. The specially designed Life Ball Audi brought in 110,000 Euros at the auction and an art work by Gottfried Helnwein was auctioned off for 70,000 Euros.
The Life Ball is now in its 22nd year and has grown from a small local event to the massive star studded event it is today. Last year the ball raised around 2.4 million Euros which went towards organisations to research, treat and prevent HIV and Aids.
(will be approved by an editor before going online)
Pat On The Back From Manure Explosive
A traffic cop in Austria got more than he bargained for after a booby trap covered him head-to-toe in manure as he was trying to catch people speeding.
Viennese Jihad Girl May Have Been Killed
Austrian police say that one of the two attractive young teenage girls who fled the country to go to Syria to fight on the side of Islamic rebels may have been killed.
Perversion of a Medical Dream
The Decline and Fall of the Otto Wagner Hospital, Vienna.
Fat Can Be Used To Burn Off Weight After New Patent Unveiled
It is being hailed as a sensation after scientists at an Austrian university patented a method that transforms fat storing cells into mini factories capable of actually destroying fat by burning it off.
Three Family Members Dead In Well Tragedy
A mother has lost her husband, her pregnant daughter and her son-in-law after a tragic accident where one of them fell into a well and the other two died while trying to carry out a failed rescue.
Brit Soldier Rescued After Climbing Mountain In T Shirt
A British soldier who tackled the frozen Austrian Alps wearing just shorts and a T-shirt has been rapped by officials after he had to be rescued from the snowy peak.
Mum And Daughter Struck By Lightning In Pool
A mother and her daughter were hospitalised after they were struck by lightning – in a swimming pool.
Police Nab Porn Star Who Filmed In Local Church
A woman accused of making a porn movie in a local church has been caught after an informant tipped off police that he recognised her by her breasts after an appeal for information.
Young Hip Hop Dancer Gets 18 Years For Drug Smuggling
A blonde hip hop dancer and charity worker promised an international career after she was spotted by a talent scout has been jailed for 18 years in Indonesia after her work offer turned out to have been part of an elaborate drugs con.
Teen Dying Of Cancer Killed At Charity Event After Ride In Porsche Goes Wrong
The family of a sick boy who was offered a trip in a high-performance Porsche because he was dying of cancer is suing the charity after the Porsche he was travelling in crashed head-on into oncoming traffic.
The most popular stories –
last 7 days
|Viennese Jihad Girl May Have Been Killed|
|Schoolboys Wear Dresses To Support Transgender Classmate|
|Pat On The Back From Manure Explosive|
|Killer Cheese Stolen In Liechtenstein|
|God Gets An Indian ID Card With Bribe|
Why suffer in silence. Let off steam by letting our readers share your troubles. File your complaints about anything and everything here.
Our ombudsman David Rogers will try and help solve some of the problems from lazy civil servants through to incompetent companies – and at the very least the worst transgressors will end up in our weekly special report.