Kayo Chingonyi was born in Zambia in 1987, moving to the UK in 1993. He is a fellow of the Complete Works programme for diversity and quality in British Poetry and the author of two pamphlets, Some Bright Elegance (Salt, 2012) and The Colour of James Brown’s Scream (Akashic, 2016). Kayo has been invited to read from his work around the world and his poems have been translated into Spanish, German, and Swedish. He was awarded the 2012 Geoffrey Dearmer Prize for his poem ‘from calling a spade a spade‘ and served as Associate Poet at the Institute of Contemporary Arts from Autumn 2015 to Spring 2016. His first full-length collection, Kumukanda, is forthcoming from Chatto & Windus. In 2016 he was a guest co-editor for The Poetry Review (Autumn issue 106:3), and was one of the judges of the 2017 Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award.
Kayo’s poem ‘Choreography’ was commissioned as part of the Thinking Outside the Penalty Box project, in a partnership with The Poetry Society’s Young Poets Network on a challenge celebrating extraordinary lives of African footballers in 2018. His commissioned poem, three other commissioned poems, the winners of the challenge and poems created in a workshop led by Kayo at The Poetry Society appear in an anthology available to read on The Poetry Society’s website.