Forget what you know about disability. Meet the world’s first amputee pop star, Viktoria Modesta – she’s amazing! Her latest single Prototype has a mesmerizing new music video which was debuted by the UK’s Channel 4 as an advertisement for the channel. The ad only aired for a short time, but it was enough for the world to sit up and take notice and look to the singer as a future star. Like the music or not, the whole presentation is stunning and unlike anything we’ve ever seen in pop music.
(To watch this video in Creation 5, just tap here.)
Modesta dances like any other artist, exposes body parts like other artists and artistically simulates sex in this risqué music video. In the bedroom scene, the most shocking part is the number of participants, not her amputated limb. This sexy and talented 26-year old Latvian singer challenges our preconceptions of disability and sexuality.
Due to the negligence of doctors when she was born her left leg was damaged at birth and never grew properly. This led to 15 operations between the ages of 6 and 12 in an attempt to improve it’s growth. Modesta elected to remove the leg in order to improve her quality of life. Now, 6 years later, she is singing about the transformation and the freedom it has given her and the fact that she is the model of the future: “Assemble me, piece by piece/ Strip away the incomplete, the model of the future/ Colliding minds, it’s just a start/ Feel the sparks, we’re building art/ It’s the vertigo of freedom.”
“My attitude towards myself is as an equal individual to any other human, no matter how superior they might like to portray themselves and this has been the key focus in my life, the feeling of equality and freedom. It’s just a kind attitude to have towards others, and it is also a liberating element of self-discovery. Since the voluntary amputation of my damaged leg I have been able to lead a fully functioning life not just creatively but also physically.”
Asked if she sees herself as a role model for those with similar problems, Modesta said “I don’t see myself as a role model for people with prosthetics or disabilities, although I am happy if they find what I do helpful or encouraging. I would really like to think that what I represent is a free spirit, someone who follows their ambitions outside of preconceptions and creates their own life script.”
The word disabled is not something that Modesta relates to: “I prefer seeing it as a health problem. The word disabled lost its meaning for me a long time ago and I find it too broad in scope and inaccurate. We are no longer living in the forests and jungles where a person with a physical body issue cannot reach their highest potential as a human being through other achievements, and physical ability or strength have nothing to do with that in my opinion. If we talk about intelligence ̶ which is something that’s leading the modern world ̶ then the term disability and who it may apply to is very much turned on its head. I believe if anyone is going to label people disabled, then their overall capabilities should be considered.”
Modesta is crafting an alternative type of pop music which you could compare to Lady Gaga. She is inspired by electronic pop, American hip-hop and “melodramatic Russian music”. When she first came to London she went through a lot of musical scenes – Metal, Trance, Garage, Swing and Electro. “I’d say my music palette is very broad, I can appreciate almost any kind of music but when I’m in the studio it usually ends up Bass Pop with some epic synths or strings.”
Check out her website for more information: viktoriamodesta.com