She's flirty, she's in your face and she's taking off her clothes to empower more women to be comfortable in their own bodies.

On stage Pixie Twist, a Hamilton-based burlesque artist, pushes boundaries in all directions.

"I do something called neo-burlesque which is a little weirder, little more fringy, than your typical burlesque," Twist said.

"I'm certainly the token weirdo in most shows that I perform at."


She's also Queen of The New Zealand Burlesque Festival having won two national titles at Burlesque New Zealand last year.

Next, she's taking on the world with a Burlesque Exchange Scholarship, which helps up-and-coming performers around the world.

Pixie Twist has been accepted to perform at six burlesque festivals in America, Canada and Australia.

"I'm competing in Arizona, New Orleans, in the 7th Annual Hawaii Burlesque Festival and Revue, it's massive, it's pretty scary.

"Never in a million years would I have thought I would have the opportunity to travel the world with my art."

Unlike striptease targeted at men, Twist brings an artistic twist painting text on her body and dousing herself in wine. It's all about reclaiming her body, sexuality and empowering women to take a stand.

"We're told all time 'you're too fat, too thin, or your thighs are too lumpy or your ass is too flat, your boobs are too small...'

"I just got sick of it and thought, perhaps the most powerful way to reclaim it is to take control of it and that's what burlesque is to me.

"Because everything that I put on that stage, it's up to me. It's up to me what clothes I take off on stage and what I leave on."

As part of Pixie Twists fundraising efforts, she will be performing in an event with her burlesque friends as part of a final show in the Toi Wāhine Festival

And Pixie Twist has a Give A Little Page too.

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