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Transgender model steals the show in Fashion Rio

Saturday, January 17, 2009

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RIO DE JANEIRO — 

Rio closed its main fashion event of the year with less attention to the clothes than the model _ a transgendered actress.

Patricia Araujo received a standing ovation after parading along the runway for the Complexo B brand late Friday to end the weeklong event in a city that delights in shocking the prudish with each year's Carnival celebration.

Complexo B designer Beto Neves said he invited Araujo to amaze the public.

"In fashion, the cool thing is to surprise," he told O Dia newspaper.

Globo Television's Web site called the 25-year-old Araujo "the star" of the show's final day, and model Isabeli Fontana told O Dia that Araujo "is the greatest."

Tall and slim, the dark-haired Araujo entered the catwalk wearing a long fur coat and quickly unveiled a short black-and-white dress to the applause of the hundreds of guests at the event.

"I love to be mobbed by the press," she told O Dia afterward. "I've always dreamed of being famous."

Her legal name is Patricia Oliveira, but she is known by the stage name of Araujo.

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