Roya the DestRoya, one-legged dancer, wows NYC subway riders

There are plenty of performers in the subway trying to get attention, but one breakdancer stole the show recently at the Union Square stop with more than just her moves.

Australian-born Roya Abdolhosini, also known as Roya the DestRoya, not only impressed an audience with her dancing, she also inspired many people because she did so despite having only one leg.

“I just want to dance, and seeing people smile from it makes my day,” she said. “And it feels good.”

A video of the 27-year-old woman’s performance at the 14th Street-Union Square subway station got widespread attention last week days after being posted on Facebook, where it was was seen more than 270,000 times and was written about by the Daily Mail U.K. 

Abdolhosini, who currently lives in Montreal, where she was training in dancing and circus arts, said she was surprised by the response. She said she was visiting New York for three weeks during the holidays, and was hanging out with some friends when she did the impromptu dance. In the video, taken by a friend, she throws down her crutches before dropping to the floor to perform, including doing a long handstand for gawking straphangers.

She said she’s received a lot of messages of support from people of all ages. “It makes me feel really good,” she said. “It’s really, really nice.”

Abdolhosini, who says her leg “simply didn’t grow” like it was supposed, got started in gymnastics before moving on to circus arts, dancing and other body movement.

She said she is raising money to potentially return to the United States for more training opportunities as she works to achieve her dream.

She said her goal is to join a circus company or a concert tour that requires dancers. “I just want to perform,” she said.