France’s Bilal Hassani brought more than his set of gorgeous wigs to Tel Aviv: he brought a self-penned anthem about his own journey to self-acceptance, which holds a message of hope and perseverance, especially for his LGBTQ listeners. With that in mind, the team from Wiwibloggs is pleased to announce that Bilal has won the 2019 Vision Music Award for LGBTQ Equality.

This award was founded in honour of Dana International, the Israeli transgender singer who won Eurovision in 1998. Conservatives at home asked Israel to withdraw from the contest, but she stood her ground and sang for all oppressed people en route to victory. The Wiwi Jury awards this prize to the contestant who did the most for the many LGBTQ fans who follow Eurovision. Activism is risky business, but the winner knows that doing what’s right is more important than bowing to the haters.

Bilal Hassani: The Dana International Award for LGBTQ Equality 2019

The lyrics of Roi speak of those who try to change Bilal, who is openly gay and adorns stunningly androgynous outfits, hair and makeup when he performs: “You put me in a box, want me to be like you. I don’t follow the codes, and it causes a stir. At the end of the day, you cannot change me, boo. So let me fly away”.

A song such as Roi serves to inspire a generation of Europeans, especially those who are LGBTQ or seen as different — cast your mind back to his dancers in Tel Aviv — to embrace their individuality and resist the haters. You can never remove his crown!

In the run-up to Eurovision, Bilal met with the LGBTQ community in Tel Aviv during his postcard shoot. He spent time with elderly members of the community, which shows his appeal extends beyond age, and thanked them for the impact they made on his generation of LGBTQ members.

He also met 20 young members of the community. During the meet and greet, Bilal explained the importance of “Roi” to his audience:

“The song “Roi”, which I will be performing at the Eurovision, talks about acceptance and self-love, and I am grateful that thanks to you, I can be myself, regardless of what others will say”.

In attendance was Tel Aviv-Yafo City Council Member Itay Pinkas, who spoke highly of the French star:

“Many are inspired by Bilal. He embodies perfectly the values of the Eurovision Song Contest: solidarity between people and nations, the love of art as music and the courage to share a different voice. In the name of the City and the Municipality, we are proud to welcome Bilal.”

Vision Music Awards 2019

This award is just one of a dozen awards we have launched as part of the Vision Music Awards 2019 (VMAs).

Our 13 categories — from best dressed to most wronged at ESC — identify the contestants who left the biggest impression on Eurovision fans, regardless of whether they won the contest or not.

 

20 Comments
Newest
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Dawid
Dawid
1 year ago

So in name of equality, we’ll give special reward for one part of community. Equal as heck if you ask me. And I’m gay.

Matt
Matt
1 year ago
Reply to  Dawid

It’s for the artist that does the most in support of a marginalised community, there’s no restriction on the sexual orientation or gender identity of the recipient of the award, so I’m not sure what the issue is.

Dawid
Dawid
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt

Is there special reward for racial equality? Or nacionalists’ victims? Or disabled people? LGBT is not the only marginalised community, yet it’s only one which gets special treatment.

Like I said, I’m gay myself and i like to be treated equally. Putting yourself above others, just because they do the same thing, has nothing to do with equality.

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  Dawid

You’re gay, Dawid, we get it. If it’s not at all relevant, why mention it twice? How nice for you that you have lived your life to date without experiencing any homophobia. Not everybody has been so lucky, that’s why activism and visibility is important. It’s a shame you don’t get that.

Dawid
Dawid
1 year ago
Reply to  Jonas

Thanks for not answering to aby od my questions btw, but whatever. I mention it because without that i often hear that i’m homophobe and my opinion is irrelevant. I bet that it would be the case if i didn’t. Who said i didn’t experience it? All i say is that trying to differenciate from others like this makes you more alienated which results im more misunderstandings, agression and homophobia on the other side. It looks well only inside your bubble, but noone from there discriminate you anyway. Try to think how people who don’t like you feel and understand… Read more »

Jonas
Jonas
1 year ago
Reply to  Dawid

If you often hear that you are homophobic, maybe you should reflect on that? Gay people can be just as homophobic as anybody else.

KYLLITO
KYLLITO
1 year ago

Much deserved Bilal. Keep slaying and being you!

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
1 year ago

So basically an award for pretending to stand for something in lieu of having an actual talent.

Toinousse
Toinousse
1 year ago

well at least he’s out there singing and living while you are bitching on a public forum

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
1 year ago
Reply to  Toinousse

I’m living and bitching, bitch. And if you wanna call that singing, you obviously have no standards.

KYLLITO
KYLLITO
1 year ago

Me Vanilla Bean….Bilal isn’t my favorite from the 2019 show, but one thing I know for sure is that you are a bitter bitch. Much love from Texas!

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
1 year ago
Reply to  KYLLITO

I’m honest. I’d be bitter if I were a hypocrite. Unfortunately, I can’t send you love back, since I don’t know who you are and you know absolutely nothing. So no love to Texas. 😉

Purple Mask
Purple Mask
1 year ago

Wait, if Bilal is not “singing”, then how else would you describe what he is doing?
I understand the criticism, but I am curious as to how else one could describe his manner of singing as something other than singing.

Africavision
Africavision
1 year ago

Every single comment of yours on Wiwibloggs is just negative. You complain about the artists. You complain about the songs. I have yet to see you say one good thing about the contest, or say one thing that you actually like about Eurovision. My question is, if you have such negative feelings for the contest, why do you even follow it? You are clearly just torturing yourself by following it, and torturing the Wiwibloggs readers with the venom and hate you spew.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
1 year ago
Reply to  Africavision

Yeah, I’m not into torture. I suggest you check your vision or your ability to read or check into the SJW safe space.

Mr. Vanilla Bean
Mr. Vanilla Bean
1 year ago

I’m sorry dear but I neither know any 80 year-olds, nor any strippers. But apparently you do. It’s brave to tell us about your disturbing preferences. Nobody wants to know and it sounds disgusting, but nevertheless also brave in a way. And since you’re such a brainiac: I do not share my name with anybody and in case it isn’t clear enough: it’s a nickname, not my real name. A hard concept to grasp for you, I’m sure.

Thunder and lightning it's getting exciting
Thunder and lightning it's getting exciting
1 year ago

I’m so proud of him!!!! 🙂

TheDr Mistery
TheDr Mistery
1 year ago

Who won this in the past (other than Conchita, of course)?

ESCFan2009
ESCFan2009
1 year ago
Reply to  TheDr Mistery

Quote from the overview article 2017:
“2013: Finland’s Krista Siegfrids
2014: Austria’s Conchita Wurst
2015: Serbia’s Bojana Stamenov
2016: Hovi Star”

pepe
pepe
1 year ago
Reply to  ESCFan2009

I wonder what Hovi Star did to deserve this award, besides being obnoxious.