Nemo | Photo Credit: Getty Images

Between sweaty, locker room-set performances and disruptive Grindr “bloops,” the 2024 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest is already shaping up to be an especially gay one—but when is it not?

Since it began in 1956, Eurovision has brought together artists representing countries across the European Union (and beyond) in a tournament-style competition that typically favors pop bombast, melodrama, spectacle, and more than a little kitsch.

Naturally, these factors have long made it an annual must-see event for gay audiences across the globe, but especially in recent years, the contest has seen a number of LGBTQ+ take the stage, too. And, sometimes, they even take the top prize!

The victor of last year’s tournament and 2012’s, the Swedish signer Loreen, came out as bisexual in the time between her dual wins. Bisexual Dutch performer Duncan Laurence won in 2019. Bearded drag queen Conchita Wurst in 2014. Trans singer Dana International in 1998. The list goes on and on!

But what are the chances another queer star could join the winner’s circle this year? Thankfully, there are plenty of folks who dedicate themselves to Eurovision odds-making… and things are looking good!

Could nonbinary Swiss singer Nemo win Eurovision 2024?

Even before the semi-final round of performances began on May 7, Switzerland-born nobinary singer-songwriter Nemo has been heavily favored to win this year’s contest with their song “The Code.”

The number is big, bold, and incredibly catchy—all the qualities that make for a sure-fire smash hit in the competition—and it finds Nemo effortlessly shifting between rapping and operatic vocals over a propulsive electronic ’90s house dance beat.

If that sounds like a lot to you, well, that’s Eurovision, baby!

But, beyond the soaring hooks and dance breaks, 24-year-old Nemo’s song packs a powerful, personal message. “The Code” is inspired by their experiences coming to terms with their nonbinary identity, ultimately sharing an uplifting story about how they “went to hell and back” but “found paradise” by breaking out of the binary.

Speaking with AP earlier this week, Nemo shared what the song’s warm reception has meant to them thus far: “Knowing they like a song where I am, like, unconditionally myself, and I talk about the journey of finding myself and being non-binary and knowing that it touches them … it’s really beautiful.”

And even though it’s a competition, Nemo just seems thrilled to be a part of the global music community—one that’s versatile, inclusive, and incredibly supportive.

“People start understanding more and I think that understanding means the world to me,” Nemo continued. “And just being able to represent this community at Eurovision is amazing. And I’m so glad that I am not even the only one this year. You know, like that’s even better because it just, it just shows that it’s needed.”

That’s right, Nemo isn’t the only queer artist—or even the only nonbinary artist—in the contest this year…

Meet the LGBTQ+ artists competing in Eurovision 2024

A number of trailblazing LGBTQ+ musicians have represented their countries in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. Depending on when you’re reading this, we may already know which are moving on to the finals, broadcasting live on Saturday May 11. But, for now, here’s a quick overview of the 7 other queer performers who qualified for the semi-finals.

Bambie Thug, “Doomsday Blue” (Ireland)

Don’t be scared! Ireland’s Bambie Thug mixes the sweet with the metal in their dark and utterly unique “Doomsday Blue.” Bambie uses they/them pronouns and is the first nonbinary artist to represent their country.

*Bambie Thug competed in Semi-Finals, Round 1, and is moving on to the finale.

Electric Fields, “One Milkali (One Blood)” (Australia)

If you’ve ever been to Mardi Gras, you know Aussies love to party, so it’s appropriate this queer dance-pop duo represents their country with this dancefloor bop, which incorporates the Aboriginal language Yankunytjatjara.

*Electric Fields competed in Semi-Finals, Round 1, and will not move on to the finale.

Megara, “11:11” (San Marino)

Originally from Madrid, Spain, the electro-punk-pop band Megara represents the small but mighty nation of San Marino with the riotous “11:11.” Their lead vocalist, Kenzy Loevett, identifies as a lesbian.

*Megara competed in Semi-Finals, Round 2, and will not move on to the finale.

Mustii, “Before The Party’s over” (Belgium)

Fans of international Drag Race editions will recognize Mustii from his guest-judging stint on Drag Race Belgique. The queer superstar represents his country with the anthemic slow-burn “Before The Party’s Over.”

*Mustii competed in Semi-Finals, Round 2, and will not move on to the finale.

OIly Alexander, “Dizzy” (U.K.)

You know him, you love him, the Years & Years frontman and It’s A Sin star Olly Alexander teamed with super-producer Daniel Harle (who’s worked with Dua Lipa & Caroline Polachek) on this euphoric pop number.

*Representing one of Eurovision’s “Big Five” countries, he automatically advances to the finals.

SABA, “Sand” (Denmark)

Queer model-turned-theater star SABA was born in Ethiopia, but adopted at a young age and raised in Denmark, which she represents with the soaring “SAND” which would sound right at home on U.S. pop radio.

*SABA competed in Semi-Finals, Round 2, and will not move on to the finale.

Silvester Belt, “Luktelk” (Lithuania)

Lithuania’s first LGBTQ+ representative in the contest, bisexual Silvester Belt has been working his way toward Eurovision since he was a teen, and finally made it to the finals with his entrancing “Luktelk”

*Silvester Belt competed in Semi-Finals, Round 1, and is moving on to the finale.

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