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Horizontal & Sickbabe

The Horizontal R+D was supported by Birmingham Repertory Theatre, Fierce Festival and Arts Council England.

Horizontal investigates the relationship between invisible 'disabilities', capitalism and the awkward bits of life in between.


In 2009 Suriya was diagnosed with chronic Chiari malformation type 1. Chiari is a condition where the lower part of the brain pushes down into the spinal canal. She underwent brain surgery in 2011. The condition means she is registered disabled. Although you wouldn’t know it looking at her.


This will be an honest, funny and challenging exploration of how capitalism and our medicalised systems collide. 


Horizontal is led by artist Suriya Aisha, who works across creative disciplines to explore challenging questions. It is a research and process led. It works with individuals who have lived experience of chronic invisible disabilities to give voice to their experiences.

Artists involved include:

Aerial Artist and Artistic Director: Vicki Amedume

Film Maker: Jaha Browne

Photographer: Ali Baskerville 

Artist: Demi Nandhra 

Dramaturg / Director: Daniel Bailey 


The process will be documented through Suriya's blog. It is an ongoing action research process, working with participants who have lived experience of invisible disabilities. It is also an active exploration into how artists dealing with these issues can re-write the rules of the making process creating new blueprints for new ways of making.

'The Horizontals' are a group of participants who identify as having invisible disabilities, they directly inform the research process. In autumn 2017 they were invited to be part of TEDxBrum.

Horizontal was pitched at China Plate's Bite Size Festival, Saturday 7 October 2017. 

Horizontal has lead to the collaboration between Suriya, and She Wants a Dog who are together developing new podcast series Sickbabe


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