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The Dizziness of Freedom Book Launch
Thursday 20 September
All orders will be subject to a fee of £1.50 except if your tickets are free or if you are a member
A dynamic night of live poetry to launch The Dizziness of Freedom – an anthology about mental health from Bad Betty Press. Shortlisted for Most Innovative Publisher in the 2018 Saboteur Awards, Bad Betty Press presents a night of live poetry to celebrate the launch of their groundbreaking anthology on mental health, supported by Arts Council England. The Dizziness of Freedom showcases compelling, strange, beautiful and startlingly honest stories about mental health, written by 50 of contemporary poetry’s most exciting voices.
This launch at Rich Mix features live sets from a few of the book’s contributors — spoken word legends, Salena Godden, Joelle Taylor, Byron Vincent, Dean Atta and special guests. The night will be hosted by Jake Wild Hall and Amy Acre, who founded Bad Betty in 2017.
The Dizziness of Freedom came about to encourage conversation about mental health, help break taboos and challenge stigma. Contributors include Lemn Sissay MBE, Melissa Lee-Houghton, Rob Auton, Mona Arshi, Caleb Femi, Mary Jean Chan, Luke Kennard and R.A. Villanueva.
A legend on the live poetry scene, Salena Godden’s been described as 'everything the Daily Mail is terrified of' (Kerrang!). Author of literary memoir Springfield Road and poetry collections Fishing In The Aftermath and Under The Pier, she’s also written widely for the BBC radio and anthologies including bestseller The Good Immigrant. Salena was shortlisted for the 2017 Ted Hughes Award for new work in poetry with her spoken word album LIVEwire.
Award winning poet, playwright, essayist and author, and the founder of the Poetry Society’s national youth slam championships. She has performed her poetry in venues ranging from the 100 Club to Parliament, and is the host for Out-Spoken poetry and music club in London. Her highly acclaimed new collection Songs My Enemy Taught Me was published in July 2017 by Out-Spoken Press.
One of BBC poetry season’s New Talent Choices, Byron is a regular at the UK’s most prestigious literary and music festivals. His debut solo show, Talk About Something You Like, received much critical acclaim for its poignant and personal exploration of the mental health system. He’s devised and presented several Radio 4 documentaries, exploring issues such as mental health, social housing, violence and ghettoization. Byron is a proud ambassador for mental health charity Rethink.
Named one of the most influential LGBT people in the UK by the Independent on Sunday Pink List, Dean has performed widely across the UK and internationally. He’s been commissioned by BBC Radio 4, BBC World Service, Dazed & Confused, Keats House Museum, National Portrait Gallery, Tate Britain and Tate Modern. His debut collection, I Am Nobody’s Nigger, was shortlisted for the Polari First Book Prize. He co-produces spoken word night Come Rhyme With Me alongside Deanna Rodger, and is Guest Artistic Director of New Writing South.
Bad Betty Press
Your hosts for the evening are Bad Betty editors, Amy Acre and Jake Wild Hall, who set up as a small press in July 2017. Between them they’ve been awarded Spirit of the PBH Free Fringe, a PBS recommendation and a Poetry School Best Book award, and run regular poetry events, slams and festival stages. Bad Betty publishes poetry collections, anthologies and pamphlets by emerging authors.
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Things you should know
Suitable for ages 16+
This event is wheelchair accessible.