LOYCE GAYO is a Tanzanian born creative, aspiring scholar and teaching artist based in Houston, TX. Gayo’s work is influenced by her experience in the African Diaspora and celebrates the journey of a people dispersed. Gayo was the slam champion of the UT Spitshine poetry slam team who won the 2014 Collegiate Union Poetry Slam Invitational (CUPSI). Her work has been featured on Button Poetry, Write About Now, Badilisha Poetry, Fields Magazine and PBS. She teaches creative writing for Writers in the Schools, Houston and founded a creative writing and performance initiative for East African youths called Paza Sauti.


a collection of videos and pictures highlighting my performances in slams, speaking engagements and my student activism.

Button Poetry

How We Forget

PBS: Art In Context


Write About Now

Politics at God's Funeral

Write About Now

Shopping While Black

Austin While Black

Student Activism


Gayo is interested in studying the impact of globalization on the sociopolitical and economic history of East Africa. With the support of funding from several grants, including the School of Undergraduate Studies and the Intellectual Entrepreneurship Program in the Moody School of Communications at UT-Austin, I conducted independent research in Dar-es-Salaam on the use of Social Capital Theory in Tanzanian development discourse. I presented my findings from this project at the Africa Conference held at the University of Texas at Austin in 2015. I plan to pursue a doctoral degree in African History.

Tunda Store

Tunda (meaning "fruit" in Kiswahili) is an online store Loyce founded at 16 years old, that sells handmade East African accessories. The pieces are a celebration of her Tanzanian heritage with a hint of Diasporic influences.


Loyce is also a digital and film photographer. She enjoys taking portraits, shooting in the streets and using photography to documents precious moments from her travels around the United States, and across the world.

Check out these portraits she took.


Ariana Brown

A carrier of an ancient wisdom, a deliberate psalm. With her clear sound and emotion-filled performances, Loyce clears a room and fills it with possibility. She reminds us to know ourselves and our history better, so that we may be more effective and loving community members -- a divine vessel, an essential artist: a miracle maker.

Badilisha Poetry

Somehow knowing as we listen to this brave, emotionally naked poet … there is an inescapable remembrance. An undeniable truth, resonance offered to us with generous passion, conviction, integrity and vulnerability. You can't avoid being touched or provoked by it.


Nasahau mara ngapi nimesikiliza mshahiri huyu, lakini kila wakati nasikia sauti mpya. This is profound. Asante sana Loyce

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