Amputee star Modesta to appear in nude Paris show


Paris (AFP)

The world's "first bionic performance artist" Viktoria Modesta, the British model who had one leg amputated when she was 20, is to appear at the Paris cabaret Crazy Horse, known for its burlesque shows.

The 31-year-old singer, who appeared in the closing ceremony of the 2012 London Paralympics, will be the star of several specially created scenes with the cabaret's troupe of nude dancers, Crazy Horse told AFP.

Modesta is best known for the video of her 2014 song "Prototype" in which she appears in a tutu with a spiked prosthetic leg.

It went viral on YouTube and social media, and was viewed 16 million times on the Facebook page of British broadcaster Channel 4.

Latvian-born Modesta said she intends to "push back the limits of femininity in the most surprising and innovative ways" in the Crazy Horse shows, which begin in June.

"In a world questioning the role and image of femininity, Viktoria Modesta allows us to put on stage another vision of women, sensuality and beauty in the 21st century," the cabaret's artistic director Andree Deissenberg said.

The artist, who was born with a malformed hip due to an accident at birth, chose to have her leg amputated below the knee to "improve mobility and safeguard future health".

It took her five years to persuade surgeons to do the operation, which she described as literally severing the thing that was holding her back.

Modesta has since become something for a pin-up for amputees and for questioning taboos around disability and sexuality.

She said she did not set out to "represent disability".

"I represent the feeling that you have a choice to create your own identity. It's about taking charge of your own assets. If you don't fit in, then don't fit in," she said.

"Baywatch" star Pamela Anderson and American burlesque star Dita Von Teese have previously featured in the Crazy Horse show, as has the Austrian drag queen Conchita Wurst, who won the Eurovision Song Contest in 2014.