Bald Black Girl(s) | Free Word

10 April 2019
19:00 21:00-

Presented by:
Free Word


Poetry, film and discussion

Bald Black Girl(s) is a multi-disciplinary project created by poet, producer and visual artist Ruth Sutoyé, supported by Free WordArts Council England and Roundhouse, which centres the narratives of black women who choose to shave their heads, and explores perceptions of masculinity, femininity and androgyny alongside sexuality, gender identity and barbershop dynamics. 

As part of Free Word’s All The Ways We Could Grow Season, Free Word saw the premiere of Ruth Sutoyé’s Reign, an ethereal, afrofuturistic inspired short poetry film that re-imagines a world where only bald black women exist. 

Watch Reign:



The evening also featured readings from poets Anita Barton-Williams and Chelle O.T., followed by a conversation chaired by producer and curator Aliyah Hasinah, and included Ruth Sutoyé, gal-dem editor-in-chief Liv Little, founder of the award-winning Wig Witch Gina Atinuke Knight and Sarah Atayero.


Listen below to the recording:


Graphic Design: Denny Kaulbach

Front photo of Ruth Sutoyé: Almass Badat

10 April 2019
19:00 - 21:00
£10 / £7 / £2

Free Word


Photos: Rowan Spray


Ruth Sutoyé

Poet, creative producer and visual artist

Ruth Sutoyé is a poet, creative producer and visual artist. She is a Roundhouse Resident Artist, Barbican Young Poet alumna and currently one of London's Boat Poets-in-Residence, supported by Arts Council England & Thames Festival Trust. Her work has featured in several publications and platforms including Peepal Tree Press, Kabaka Magazine, True Africa, Bad Betty Press and The Cob Gallery. Ruth employs an archival approach to her work and has performed across the UK and abroad, gracing stages such as St Paul's Cathedral and Lagos International Poetry Festival. 'Bald Black Girl(s)' is her debut exhibition supported by Arts Council England, Free Word & Roundhouse.

Anita Barton-Williams

Poet, translator and producer

Anita Barton-Williams is a poet, translator and producer. She is the mother and father of Heaux Noire: a creative platform and organisation amplifying the work of Black and Brown womxn artists. She is a former Roundhouse Resident Artist, Barbican Young Poet alumna, and member of Octavia poetry collective. She lives between London and Brussels.

Aliyah Hasinah

Poet, arts producer and curator

Aliyah Hasinah is an arts producer, curator and poet. She is the Midlands producer for Apples and Snakes; with her work across theatre, poetry and curation being rooted in a decolonial praxis. Aliyah amplifies black and brown artists and seeks to disrupt the status quo of contemporary art. Recent curatorial work and commissions include TEDxBrum at Birmingham Hippodrome, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, TEDxSkoll at the Sheldonian Theatre and Eastside Projects.

Liv Little

gal-dem Founding editor-in-chief

Liv Little is a curator, audio producer and the founder of gal-dem. She has also worked as a digital exec in commissioning at the BBC and as a contributing editor for ELLE UK. Liv is obsessed with telling people’s stories and this threads throughout all of the work that she does whether in audio, video, art or discussion

Sarah Atayero

Writer and Research Assistant

Sarah Atayero is a British Nigerian aspiring clinical psychologist. She currently works as a therapist on a mental health research project with children at Great Ormond Street Hospital. Her key interests are adolescent mental health and BAME mental health - she has campaigned, written, and ranted on radio endlessly about BAME mental health. Features include pieces in gal-dem and the recent anthology ‘The Colour of Madness’

Chelle O.T.

Poet, Songwriter, Actress

A poet, songwriter, actor and 1/3 of SISTREN podcast and movement, Chelle O.T. is a jack of many trades, with plenty more up their sleeve. Making plantain crisp disappear, being one. Their work explores familial dynamics, youth culture, identity and religion, from the perspective of an emo with a sunshine aura.

Gina Atinuke Knight

Business Woman and Social Media Inspiration

Business woman and social media inspiration, Gina Knight is the woman behind The Wig Witch. With a following amassing over 55,000 on Instagram Gina has built and nurtured a loyal and engaged fan base with her witty, inspiring, socially relevant and honest content and approach to life, something that she’s further cemented by her raw documentation of her experiences with hair loss. Alongside her main page and presence Gina also runs an award winning wig making service operating under Gina Knight Wig Design. Conceived as a means to explore protective styling options after suffering from post pregnancy hair loss, The Wig Witch has become revered for it’s distinct and versatile natural looking afro hair textures.



There is step-free access to all areas of Free Word and a number of other facilities available to make the venue accessible. 

  • Our box office, theatre and hall are all on the ground floor with step-free access from the street
  • Meeting rooms and offices are accessible by lift from the ground floor
  • There are two accessible toilets on the ground floor
  • Hearing loops are available at the box office and the theatre (when set up theatre style) and in all meeting rooms
  • If you need to bring someone for assistance, please get in touch with us so we can provide a free ticket for them

Please talk to our team if you have specific access requirements.