Who We Are
Nadia Hagen was born in New York City. She spent an inordinate amount of time in the Museum of Natural History and at various Broadway musicals. At 17, she ran away from home to join a hippie circus and spent the next few years in musical projects and black box theaters.
From 1989-1990, she recorded and toured with the infamous Tribal/Industrial project Crash Worship. These experiments in Chaos strengthened an attachment to environmental theater and ritual, but the lack of costuming choices eventually led her in 1991, to form Then Tingari. This was also a tribal drum project with performance that incorporated dance, martial arts and the first flicker of fire performance.
In 1995, Nadia received an Artist in Residence Award from the City of Tucson and collaborated with local artists to create Many Mouths One Stomach, an urban parade combining marching drums, staged theater performances, puppetry and fire-art. This became the prototype for the fifth All Souls’ Procession, which came under Nadia’s direction in 1996.
Flam Chen Pyrotechnic Theater was founded the year previously and created the ritual finale element to All Souls. Flam Chen has grown into one of North America’s premiere fire troupes, winning a New York Fringe Excellence Award, performing at festivals nationally and abroad and featured in the book, Freaks & Fire: The Reinvention of Circus.
Sahar Mitchell Strange
Sahar is very proud to be a part of the Board of Directors for Many Mouths, One Stomach. MMOS represents a melding of two of Sahar’s favorite endeavors: performance and community spectacle. As a member of the troupe Strange Family Circus, Sahar has been professionally obnoxious via circus, sideshow, fire and dance since 2002 and earned the distinction ‘first African American woman to have a speaking role in an American sideshow’ while working in New York in 2003. Sahar is a founding member of Production Agency for Participatory Arts who has successfully produced the Phoenix Annual Parade of the Arts for the past 6 years. Sahar has won several accolades from the New Times “Best of Phoenix,” and has performed throughout the United States with the Coney Island Circus Sideshow, Hell City Tattoo Convention, The Fiesta Bowl Block Party, and Tour de Fat. As an opening act, Sahar has appeared with rock bands Calexico and Garbage and made a special appearance for the screening of “The Devil’s Carnival” directed by Darren Lynn Bousman (of the “Saw” movies).
Publications as the Arizona Republic, Java Magazine, 944 Magazine, Desert Living Magazine, The Los Angeles Times and the Brooklyn Bay News help document Sahar’s whereabouts through nice pictures an odd misquotes. Sahar can be seen performing in art galleries, festivals, concerts, sideshows, variety shows, and corporate events. She regularly holds down an unimpressive day job and is mom to two very impressive young daughters.
Paul now serves full-time as a Board Member for MMOS and Technical Director of Flam Chen Pyrotechnic Theater Company, while promoting events throughout the year locally, nationally, and internationally.
Flam Chen has represented the United States in the 2003 Macau International Arts Festival, Juste Pour Rire-Montreal Canada 2004 and numerous civic festivals around the world. His upcoming projects include securing the legacy of festal culture in Southern AZ and North America at large and the launch of The Tucson International School of Circus and Performing Arts.
Fonda Hamilton-Insley is a native Tucsonan, raised in a home full of music and dance by her mother, a folk artist, and father whose life’s work is helping handicapped children. Fonda has led a life full of community service and support for the arts.
In the early 1980’s Fonda was part of a loose-knit organization called Tucson Hard Core. THC brought many of the world’s most cutting-edge musicians to Tucson, she went on to be a writer and work as a photographer for several punk magazines, fanzines and do photos for several early punk rock album covers. She continued to work for independent labels and music festivals for over ten years.
Fonda went on to become a founding member of Midriff Crisis, a Tribal Fusion Dance Troupe, as well as a part of Feral Rhythms percussion group. Fonda has served on the Board of Directors of the a.k.a. Theatre and the Historic Fox Tucson Theatre. She was named volunteer of the year for the Tucson AIDS Project
Passionate about animals she has taken in many injured and abused animals. Currently she has 4 dogs, a cat and a ferret that were all victims of abuse.
Fonda has participated in the All Souls Procession for several years and is fascinated by Festal Culture and its many forms.
Tom Prezelski is a University of Arizona graduate and Tucson native whose family roots in Southern Arizona extend to the 18th Century. He lives in downtown Tucson, just a few blocks from the row house on Convent Street where his nana babysat a child named Lalo Guerrero.
Tom served in the Arizona House of Representatives 2003-2008 where he became known for his vocal and effective advocacy for issues of local control and economic development. His proudest single achievement there was having shut down the House in a successful effort to stop a piece of special-interest legislation aimed at undermining the City of Tucson.Tom has long been involved in Tucson’s arts and music scene, largely as a fan, though in recent years he has taken up the ukulele with the encouragement of (and in a half-successful attempt to impress) a local musician who shall remain nameless for various reasons. Tom also serves on the boards of the Tucson’s Birthday Committee and the Tucson Artists and Musicians Healthcare Alliance (TAMHA). He currently works as a tribal planner for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe, where, among other things, he is working to bring solar power to the reservation community.