Over the past 11 years Jude Binder has been the face behind the face of FestivALL, literally. You've seen the iconic "FestivALL Princes" on our promotional materials for years, and also at our events where she dances in her beautifully crafted masks and costumes. She adapted this title of "Princess" after performing at one of our FestivALL events in her Marie Antoinette-style wedding dress that was her daughter-in-laws. Children at the event started calling her a princess, and the nickname has stuck ever since. From then on she became a fixture of our 10 day arts festival and continues to wear this dress among others while making one new mask each year.
Not only is Jude our "princess", she is a dancer, woodcarver, painter, mask-maker, actor, playwright, graphic artist and teacher. She is also the founder of Heartwood in the Hills, which she founded in 1982 with Frank Venezia in Big Bend, WV. Within this nonprofit performing arts education organization, Jude provides students ages 5 through 75, from at least nine counties, with the opportunities and resources to develop cognitive and creative skills, self-confidence, and self-expression through the arts.
This year, Jude was named the Tamarack Foundation’s 2017-18 Master Artist Fellow for her years of artistic accomplishments. Her work was selected from seventeen nominee applications by an independent committee comprised of fellow West Virginia-based master artists and leading national arts experts. Jude will receive a financial award and a year-long national marketing campaign that will illuminate her vast and varied career.
To learn more about Jude's career and fellowship, click here.