Basil Jones

Co-founder and executive producer of Handspring Puppet Company, Basil Jones completed his B.F.A. at the University of Cape Town, where he met future husband, Adrian Kohler. In 1990, he set up a not-for-profit NGO Handspring Trust, which produced Spider's Place, an innovative, multi-media science education series for TV, radio, and comics aimed at young learners from disadvantaged backgrounds. He set up the Handspring Awards for Puppetry, which recognize and encourage puppet design, direction, and performance in South Africa. The Handspring Trust is involved in a number of projects in urban townships and rural areas, using puppetry as a means to educate and power youth, bringing communities together through street parades and performance. He speaks and writes on the subject of puppetry and is interested in growing an international dialogue on the theater of objects. He received the Naledi Executive Directors Award in 2012, a lifetime achievement award from Tshwane University in 2006, and an honorary doctorate in literature from University of Cape Town in 2012. Current as of March 2014