Monday, September 2, 2013

Chilean pop sensation Alex Anwandter: 'So, yeah, I guess I'm a [gay] activist. A closeted activist.'

Alex Anwandter is a leading light of Chile's pop rennaisance, celebrated at this summer's Latin Alternative Music Conference (LAMC) in New York.
     His music became identified with Daniel Zamudio after his brutal murder at the hands of Chilean neo-Nazis last year.
     Zamudio's family said Anwandter was Daniel's favorite artist; they played his music at the funeral, which became the focal point of a media frenzy, and encouraged Anwandter to continue speaking out against Chilean homophobia.
     The experience inspired Anwandter to create a music video that was a tribute to Jennie Livingston’s 1990 documentary about New York’s queer subculture, “Paris is Burning”.
     “My idea was that we in Chile don’t have an equivalent of Paris is Burning. We are that far behind. Like people do not accept any type of diversity, nor do they get to actually see diversity. So my intention was to show, if you wish, sexual minorities or diversity in a very beautiful light,” Anwandter explains.
     The final result is the video to his song “Como Puedes Vivir Contigo Mismo”. [How can you live with yourself?]
     When asked whether he now calls himself an activist, Anwandter isn’t so sure at first.
     But then he says, “I’ve been a bit surprised now reading press releases or stuff calling me “singer and activist.” I’m like what? I’m an activist? But I guess, I’m fine with it. When I found out that my visibility could actually help get a message across, I felt comfortable with that. So yeah, I guess I’m an activist. A closeted activist.”

Anwandter discussed gay marriage on this week's installment of PRI's Afropop Worldwide, which devoted an hour to the Latin Alternative Music Conference:
I don't really think of gay marriage as something that in my country should be a priority because we are, like, far behind that actually. In Chile, sometimes gay movements tend to hide some elements of the sexual diversity and I think it's like a correct ideal done wrong. My goal, my flag somehow is more of acceptance and tolerance and in living in diversity rather than achieving something as concrete as attached to economic rights like gay marriage.
Below: Anwandter's Tatuaje (Tattoo)

Anwandter's collaboration with fellow Chilean Gepe on Alex & Daniel

Below: two arresting videos by LAMC performer Ulises Hadjis

No comments:

Post a Comment