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Who is the real Sia? The story behind the wig-wearing singer who REFUSES to show her face and once contemplated suicide while battling alcohol and drug addiction

She caught the attention of audiences the world over with her bizarre performance at the 57th annual Grammy Awards on Sunday.

With her back pointedly turned to the crowd, Australian singer songwriter Sia Furler's pitch-perfect tones reverberated through the amphitheater while two dancers, including actress Kristen Wiig, dressed in nude bodysuits and matching platinum wigs, writhed around the stage in her stead.

But with 25 million record sales and a string of accolades to her name, why does the woman behind the wig refuse to show her face?

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Trappings of fame: The Aussie songstress, pictured at the Grammy awards last week, is now sober and enjoying remarkable success professionally, but prefers to shun the spotlight

Who is the real Sia: She's sold over 25 million songs and was nominated for four Grammy Awards in 2015 but why does Sia Furler feel the need to hide her face?

'It's horrible, I just wanted to have a private life,' the intensely camera-shy 39-year-old told the New York Times last year of her meteoric rise to fame.

'Once, as my friend was telling me they had cancer, someone came up and asked, in the middle of the conversation, if they could take a photograph with me.'

  

Struggling to project an extroverted persona whilst on stage, the fame-shunning singer's unwillingness to be in the spotlight has escalated to the point where she hides her face behind masks, heavy paint and, most recently, a blonde bobbed wig.

Sia refused to appear in the cover art or the music video of her latest single Chandelier and featured on the cover of Billboard Magazine with a paper bag over her head in October 2013.

Writing over the front of the bag read: 'This artist is responsible for over 12 million track sales, has a new single on the Hunger Games soundtrack and doesn't want to be famous...'

Sia & Maddie Ziegler wear white wigs to 2015 Grammys
 
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Bizarre: The Australian singer-songwriter had her back to the audience while singing her hit Chandelier at the Grammys on Sunday night, she let Kristen Wiig (left) and 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler (right) dominate the stage in her stead

Bizarre: The Australian singer-songwriter had her back to the audience while singing her hit Chandelier at the Grammys on Sunday night, she let Kristen Wiig (left) and 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler (right) dominate the stage in her stead

Dark past: Sia has discussed her former addiction to drugs and alcohol in a new interview, admitting to being a 'pill-popper' 

Attention detracting: The fame-shunning 39-year-old, pictured here after her Grammys performance, rarely shows her face unobscured while on stage

 

More recently, Sia raised eyebrows when she took to the stage on the Ellen DeGeneres show inside of a giant white box, earlier this month.

Only her head could be seen poking out of the top but a blonde wig with long bangs completely covered her eyes and nose.

In similar performances on US talks shows Late Show With Seth Meyers and Jimmy Kimmel Live, she was seen spooning Girls creator and star Lena Dunham - who also donned a platinum wig - while lying face down on a bed and singing covered in face paint, with her back to the audience respectively.

Sia also obscured her features in behind-the-scenes footage released of the filming of her controversial music video for Elastic Heart.

The blonde was seen sitting in a director's chair while she explained her creative choices but a large bunch of bananas was superimposed to cover her face.

In hiding: The intensely camera-shy performer goes to remarkable lengths to avoid attention, from her over-the-top wig at the Grammys, to posing with a paper bag over her head on magazine covers