By Megan Wadding, March 2016 Issue.

The runway is set, the choreography has been perfected and the designers are ready to reveal their works of art.

The 13th annual Möda Provocateūr, billed as “not your grandmother’s fashion show,” will take place March 6 at the Tucson Convention Center.

“Möda Provocateūr [is a] fashion and runway show celebrating style and compassion while raising money for the Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation [SAAF],” said Monique Vallery, associate director of development at SAAF.

The first Möda Provocateūr took place in 2004 and since then more than 10,000 guests, corporate partners and performing participants have been involved in supporting the annual event.

The goal of Moda Provocateūr, according to Vallery, is to raise both funds and public awareness about HIV and remember those lost to AIDS.

The event centers around the Project Möda fashion contest, an annual design competition for budding local designers who are interested in putting their skills and creativity on display. Additionally, many Tucson-based businesses, organizations and individuals participate in the show.

“With local salons, boutiques, beauty supply stores, dance companies, musicians and artists giving time, talent and product, this out-of-the-box show promises to be entertaining,” Vallery said. “[Moda is a] night of fashion and fun to help raise money and awareness about HIV/AIDS.”

This year, participating salons include Spirit Salon & Spa, The Industry Hair Studio, Beauty Brands, the team of Artistry Beauty Studio & Ambiance Salon & Spa, The Village Salon, Toni & Guy Hairdressing and Twisted.

“The salons get to choose which local store or boutiques they would like to work with,” Vallery said. “Some of the salon’s staff not only express their creative side through hair design, but some have also designed and made the fashion for their show.”

This year, three local designers, all from Flowing Wells High School in Tucson, will showcase their work on the runway. According to Vallery, the runway, which serves as the centerpiece of the center‘s Grand Ballroom, measures 8 feet wide and 76 feet long.

Judges from throughout the community will vote for the best design in three categories – The Red Dress, Repurposed with a Purpose and Femme Lace – and the audience will vote for the overall, or best in show, garment. Winners will receive a cash prize of $500.

The evening’s entertainment will be provided by BreakOut Studios and Artifact Dance Company again this year, as well as raffle prizes. Additionally, dinner or appetizers will be served, depending on the level of ticket purchased.

“For those who purchase a runway seat, a full dinner with wine, will be served,” Vallery said. “Heavy appetizers are served for those purchasing a cocktail seat or a party box seat.”

According to, the funds raised by Möda Provocateūr support SAAF’s programs and services. And, since 2004, the event has continueed to grow into a vital fundraiser for the organization.

“We are so fortunate to have the help of local salons, boutiques and businesses to make Möda a success, each and every year,” said Wendell Hicks, executive director at SAAF. “In the past decade, Möda has generated more than $500,000 in vital support for the people SAAF serves and is an enduring testament to our community’s efforts to fight stigma on every front.”

The mission of SAAF, according to the event’s website ( is to “cultivate a healthy and stigma-free society through transformative action.”

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