William Lee Adams presents Wild Dances: My Queer and Curious Journey to Eurovision, featuring Rachel Dry
P&T Knitwear is pleased to welcome William Lee Adams for a celebration of his debut memoir, Wild Dances: My Queer and Curious Journey to Eurovision, with a discussion, audience Q&A, and book signing.
In this “page-turning, tragicomic memoir” (Thúy Đinh, NPR) of glitz, glamour, geopolitics, and the power of pop music, Wild Dances follows a misunderstood queer biracial kid from small-town Georgia who became the world’s foremost Eurovision Song Contest blogger.
William will be joined in conversation by Rachel Dry, Sunday Business editor at The New York Times. After the talk, William will sign copies of his book.
As a boy, William Lee Adams spent his days taking care of his quadriplegic brother, while worrying about his undiagnosed bipolar Vietnamese mother, and steering clear of his openly racist and homophobic father. Too shy and anxious to even speak until he was six years old, it seemed unlikely William would ever leave small-town Georgia. He passed the time alone in his room, studying maps and reading encyclopedias, dreaming of distant places where he might one day feel free.
In time, William discovered that learning was both a refuge and a ticket out. So even as he struggled to understand and to get others to accept both his sexuality and his biracial identity, William focused on his schoolwork, his extracurricular activities, and building community with the students and teachers who embraced him for who he truly was. Though his scholarship to Harvard parachuted him into a whole new world, he still carried a lifetime of secrets and unanswered questions that would haunt him no matter how far he traveled.
Years later, as a journalist in London, William discovered the Eurovision Song Contest—an annual competition known for its extravagant performers and cutthroat politics. Initially just a fan, he started blogging about the contest, ultimately becoming the most sought-after expert on the subject. From Albania, Finland, and Ukraine, to Israel, Sweden, and Russia, William was soon jetting across the Continent to meet divas, drag queens, and aspiring singers, who welcomed him to their beautiful, if dysfunctional, family of choice.
An uplifting memoir about glitz, glamour, geopolitics, and finding your people, no matter how far you must travel, Wild Dances celebrates the power of pop music to help us heal and forgive.
- This is a free in-store event with limited amphitheater-style seating
- We encourage all guests to wear masks.
- The talk will be followed by a book signing. Books signed at P&T Knitwear events must be purchased from P&T Knitwear. If you would like a signed copy and cannot attend the event, we’re happy to take your pre-order. We ship most places!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
William Lee Adams is an award-winning Vietnamese-American journalist and broadcaster. A former staff writer at Time, he’s written about Eurovision for Billboard, the Financial Times, The Guardian, Newsweek, and the New York Times, among others. He is the founder and face of Wiwibloggs, the world’s most-followed independent Eurovision blog and YouTube channel. He lives in Camberwell, South London, with his husband and two cats.
ABOUT THE MODERATOR
Rachel Dry is the Sunday Business editor at The New York Times. And way, way before that — though no one needs to do the exact math — she had the privilege of editing William Lee Adams when they were both working for their college newspaper.