Down syndrome model breaks into music industry
AUSTRALIAN model Madeline Stuart continues to break down barriers when it comes to society's perception of people with disabilities.
The 19-year-old with Down syndrome shot to fame in the middle of last year after going viral on social media and has since modelled all over the world.
Most recently Maddy modelled at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week China and Runway Dubai, making her the first person with disabilities to model in both countries.
Now she has broken into the music scene.
Maddy, originally from Mt Crosby, recently starred in Australian singer Luke Antony's music video, covering Cyndi Lauper's classic hit True Colors.
The song and the powerful video celebrate uniqueness and asks everyone to be proud of who they are.
Maddy posted the video on her Facebook page this morning, which now has more than 615,000 followers, saying how excited she was to star in the clip.
"So happy to be a part of this wonderful remake of such a special song by Cindi Lauper," she said.
"Very proud of this talented young man Luke Antony. His work is in line with my mission of inclusion."
Antony, whose brother has severe hearing loss and whose best friend is almost blind - has spent his career promoting diversity, equality and integration.
The Queensland soul singer chose True Colors to mark 30 years since the song was first released.
Much like Lauper, Antony is passionate about LGBTIQ+ issues and promoting diversity.
When Luke met Maddy, he already had his vision and script for his music video, but upon meeting her, he cancelled everything by replacing the entire music video showcasing her instead.
He knew she was the inspiration he needed to bring the song's words to life.
He first performed the song in Germany at the Munich Pride Festival, which attracts up to 200,000 people, earlier this year.
"I am a huge fan of Cyndi Lauper and have performed True Colors many times over the years in my shows," Antony said on auspop.com.au.
"It's such a beautiful song which really resonates with people, so I wanted to pay tribute to it by releasing my own version. Plus I love what the song stands for.
"Cyndi has been such a supporter of the LGBTIQ community, and as I'm also an advocate for diversity and inclusion, it was really the perfect fit."
The single, available on iTunes, Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon, was released this month.