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Haven to Present Nikki Lynette's GET OUT ALIVE

This autobiographical afrogoth musical is equal parts raucous, tender, intelligent and triumphant.

Haven to Present Nikki Lynette's GET OUT ALIVE

Haven will continue its 2021-22 season with Nikki Lynette's multidisciplinary afrogoth musical Get Out Alive, co-directed by Roger Ellis and Lucky Stiff, which features the writer and her personal journey with mental health. Get Out Alive will play July 8 - August 6, 2022 at Haven's resident home, The Den Theatre's Janet Bookspan Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave. in Chicago's Wicker Park neighborhood. Tickets are currently available at or by calling the Den Theatre Box Office at (773) 697-3830. The press opening is Wednesday, July 13 at 7:30 pm.

The cast also includes DJ P1, Keeley Morris and Jacinda Ratcliffe.

Get Out Alive is a new interdisciplinary musical by independent artist, actor and activist Nikki Lynette. This autobiographical afrogoth musical is equal parts raucous, tender, intelligent and triumphant. Recounting her personal journey marked by abuse, grief, sexual assault and suicide, Lynette raises mental health awareness through the lens of a hip-hop concert. Using storytelling, song, dance, visual media and a live DJ, Lynette's offbeat approach to sharing her personal mental health journey shows that even when life leads us to a bad place, we can always make it out alive.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 1 in 5 adults experience mental illness. In addition to stigmatization and lack of access to insurance and resources, lack of diversity and cultural competency among providers create significant barriers to mental health care access. These barriers disproportionately affect people of color and members of the LGBTQ+ community. This musical aims to deepen the conversation around mental health, leading to substantive change in the lives of individuals, particularly members of the Black and LGBTQ+ communities.

Comments writer/performer Nikki Lynette, "When I went into the psyche 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."

The production team includes Eleanor Kahn (scenic design), Anna Wooden (costume design), Gabrielle Strong (lighting design), Brett Ashleigh (sound design), Caitlin McLeod (props design, set dressing design), Keeley Morris (co-choreographer), Jacinda Ratcliffe (co-choreographer), Chris Owens (projections design), Ty Huey aka Lucy Stoole (hair and make-up design), Brannon Bowers (creative producer), Matt Hennessy (music producer) and Jayce Lewis (production stage manager).

Haven is pleased to host two special events to accompany the run of Get Out Alive. On Sunday, July 17 from 12:30 pm - 2:30 pm, Haven will hold a pre-show Wellness Event featuring a panel of local wellness practitioners and vendors. ($10 suggested donation for entry). Following the Friday, July 22 performance, Haven will host Get Out and Thrive, featuring music by DJ Ca$h Era, dancing and joy.


Title: Get Out Alive

Written by and featuring Nikki Lynette

Co-Directed by Roger Ellis and Lucky Stiff

Cast: Nikki Lynette as Nikki, Jacinda Ratcliffe as Echo #1, Keeley Morris as Echo #2 and DJ P1.

Swing: Erica Marfo.

Location: The Den Theatre's Janet Bookspan Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago

Dates: Previews: Friday, July 8 at 7:30 pm, Saturday, July 9 at 7:30 pm, Sunday, July 10 at 3 pm and Tuesday, July 12 at 7:30 pm

Press performance: Wednesday, July 13 at 7:30 pm

Regular run: Thursday, July 14 - Saturday, August 6, 2022

Curtain Times: Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm; Sundays at 3 pm.

Tickets: Previews: pay-what-you-can. Regular run $36. Reserved seating $46. Student $21. Industry $31. Tickets are currently available at®id=23&articlelink= or by calling The Den Theatre Box Office at (773) 697-3830

Industry Night: Monday, July 25 at 7:30 pm

Open-Captioned Performances: Thursday, July 28 - Sunday, July 31.

About the Artists

Nikki Lynette (Book, Music, Lyrics, Performer, she/her) is a social impact artist and mental health activist. Her music is featured in popular shows on Netflix, Hulu, Showtime and more. Since going public about her suicide recovery in 2016, Nikki's outreach grew from a mental health video series for AFROPUNK to giving a TEDx Talk hosted by Princeton University. With her play Get Out Alive, Nikki made history as the first black female playwright to be produced by American Music Theatre Project and the first AMTP work to debut at Steppenwolf Theatre Company. She was recently honored with an Ambassador of the Year Award by NAMI, the largest grassroots mental health organization in America.

Roger Ellis (Co-Director, they/them) is a director-producer of tech-forward experimental performance projects. Ellis' work explores identity, post-traumatic growth and the relationship between digital technology and the human body. Recent projects include the film adaptation of Nikki Lynette's afrogoth musical Get Out Alive, and [re: CLICK], an app-based performance devised in response to Click by Jacqueline Goldfinger. Ellis' choreography for AntigoneNOW was featured in the 27th Cairo International Festival for Experimental Theatre. Ellis' work has been produced in Atlanta, NYC, Chicago and Southern California. Ellis is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Theatre at Northwestern University.

Lucky Stiff (Co-Director, they/them) is a trans and nonbinary director, writer and performer working in Chicago and New York. They build original experiences that combine nightclub culture, theater and performance art which have been featured at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Blue Man Group, Boy Friday Dance Company and Bushwig Festival of Drag, among many others. Most recently they directed Hullabaloo by Sarah Schecter for #Enough: Plays To End Gun Violence, presented digitally by the International Thespian Society. They hold an MFA in Directing for Theater from Northwestern University.

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