Conchita Wurst is an Austrian pop recording artist and drag queen portrayed by Tom Neuwirth (born 6 November 1988). Wurst came to international attention for winning the Eurovision Song Contest in 2014 as Austria's entrant with the song "Rise Like a Phoenix."

Openly gay, Neuwirth uses masculine pronouns when referring to himself but feminine pronouns to describe Wurst. Neuwirth has stated that he does not identify as transgender, but as a man. His sexual orientation is homosexual and he also described himself as a drag queen. In an interview he also explained that Conchita is Spanish slang for vagina and Wurst is German slang for penis. Neuwirth asserted that the inclusion of the beard as part of the drag queen character was "a statement to say that you can achieve anything, no matter who you are or how you look." The inclusion of a beard as part of the drag look was not unique, having been pioneered in the 1970s by The Cockettes in San Francisco and the Bloolips in London.

The Cockettes were a psychedelic theater troupe founded by Hibiscus (George Harris) in the fall of 1969. The troupe was formed out of a group of hippies, men and women, that were living together communally in Haight-Ashbury. Hibiscus came to live with them because of their preference to dressing outrageously and proposed the idea of putting their lifestyle on the stage performing all original songs in elaborate genderfuck costumes. They gained an underground cult following that led to mainstream exposure. In 1971, The Cockettes released the short film Tricia's Wedding, lampooning the wedding ceremony of Richard Nixon's daughter, Tricia Nixon; Nixon's chief of staff H. R. Haldeman arranged a secret screening of the film for White House staffers. The Cockettes were the subject of a 2002 documentary, The Cockettes.

Bette Bourne (born Peter Bourne 22 September 1939) is a British actor, drag queen and activist. He became involved with the Gay Liberation Front in the early 70s and was inspired by the strength of one man at a GLF meeting who was wearing a denim skirt. ‘When I put the frock on it gave me a feeling of power.’ He opted out of his successful, conventional acting career to join a radical drag commune in Notting Hill. ‘People wouldn’t talk to me, actors I knew would cross the street to avoid me.’ After a period ‘in the wilderness’ he ‘elbowed his way into’ New York based, gay and lesbian theatre company, Hot Peaches, which led him to start his own gay theatre group BLOOLIPS the next year.

Miss Coco Peru is the drag persona of American actor, comedian and drag performer Clinton Leupp, known for her role in the 1999 independent film “Trick” and for her series of live theater performances. Recognizable by her "trademark copper-toned flip hairdo," She has appeared in a number of supporting and guest-starring roles in film and television. For 20 years Peru has starred in various "one-woman shows" across the U.S. and other countries, and hosted LGBT events. Since 2005 Peru has appeared in the "Conversations with Coco" series in which she "interviews and celebrates the lives and careers of the LGBT community's favorite icons." Peru's guests have included Bea Arthur, Lily Tomlin and Jane Fonda.

Two-Spirit People is a term used by some indigenous North Americans to describe or label gender-variant individuals in their communities. Historically, non-Native Americans anthropologists used the term berdache to identify an individual fulfilling one of many mixed gender roles in Native American tribes but that term has now fallen out of favor. Third and fourth gender roles traditionally embodied by two-spirit people include performing work and wearing clothing associated with both men and women. Not all tribes have rigid gender roles, but, among those that do, some consider there to be at least four genders: masculine man, feminine man, masculine woman, feminine woman. The presence of male-bodied two-spirits was a fundamental institution among most tribal peoples and , both male- and female-bodied two-spirits have been documented in over 130 North America tribes, in every region of the continent.


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