Performer. Writer. Visual artist. Visionary. These are just a few of the many words used to describe Nikki Lynette, a Chicago native who embodies the true definition of the word "artist." Fusing elements of hip hop, alternative rock, and pop, Nikki Lynette dubs her unique style of music as "AfroGoth."
This unique style is featured in her new work, "Get Out Alive," a self-described AfroGoth musical that chronicles her journey with mental health.
Have a peek at the official trailer below, which has already garnered more than 80,000 views on YouTube.
It may be hard to believe that Nikki Lynette has led anything less than a charmed life — after all, no less of an entity than Spike Lee has featured her work in his television series, She's Gotta Have It. She even won an American Music Producer Award for her work on the viral commercial, "Imagine."
But "Get Out Alive" shows that even the brightest smiles can hide the deepest pain, as it details her personal journey marked by abuse, grief, sexual assault, and suicide.
Nikki Lynette mixes mediums to chronicle her journey fully, live and in living color. Utilizing documentary footage, visual media, and new material filmed this summer on the south side of Chicago, she's turned the one song into a multi-media live show production that exemplifies the transformative and healing power of art. With art direction by Nikki herself and featuring over a dozen new songs, the show celebrates the singular voice of a survivor and helps destigmatize the conversation around mental health.
"Music that deals with mental health doesn't have to be sad or corny. If these are issues we navigate every day, then it should be the soundtrack to people's real lives," Lynette said. "When I went into the psych ward after a suicide attempt, I met all these people with the same issues as me, and they felt alone, too. I told them when I got out, I would use my platform to tell our stories — and I'm keeping my word."
Nikki Lynette goes into great detail about her experiences in her recent TEDx Talk, which you can take a listen to below.
Lynette's success in music licensing has earned its own accolades, including a prominent feature in Billboard Magazine and being invited to speak on a panel at South By Southwest. After a hiatus from releasing new music, Nikki Lynette returned to the public eye with a confession: she'd secretly been battling mental health issues. She began writing articles about depression and suicide for well-known sites like BlackDoctor, Afropunk, and AllHipHop. She held her own among medical professionals in live chats and panel discussions with hundreds of thousands of viewers.
"Get Out Alive" is directed and choreographed by Roger Ellis with associate director Becca Blaich and produced by Ira Antelis, Brannon Bowers, and Rex Mundi Al. The cast includes Keeley Morris, Jyreika Guest, and DJ P1. For more information and to buy tickets, please click here.