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Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven

From 108 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Great writing, Ambitious, Relevant

About the show

Atlantic and LAByrinth Theater Company present the latest from Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Adly Guirgis, a comic drama exploring the inner workings of a women’s halfway house in New York City. More…

From the show:

Atlantic is thrilled to partner with LAByrinth Theater Company to present Guirgis’ first new play since Atlantic Theater Company’s 2014 award-winning production of Between Riverside and Crazy.

Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Adly Guirgis takes his style to another level in this world premiere play about the harrowing, humorous, and heartbreaking inner workings of a women’s halfway house in New York City, helmed by John Ortiz (LAByrinth Artistic Director) in his Off-Broadway directing debut.


Member Reviews (108)

MEMBERS SAY:

Great acting, Absorbing, Great writing, Ambitious, Relevant
83
Avg Score

During previews
82
Edgy, Relevant, Resonant, Long, Great acting

See it if You want a portrait of all the players who live in halfway houses, and you love great performances

Don't see it if You can't sit through a long play.

During previews
86
Thought-provoking, Resonant, Intense, Hilarious, Great acting

See it if In preview, cut from 4hr last week to 3hr now; doesn’t feel long due to lively language and intriguing acting; 10+ actors portraying tough,

Don't see it if .. broken, underprivileged women; Some scenes are weaker probably due to recent rewrite (1 actor shouts out “line” at one point);

Also If life is a constant struggle, is it still worth living?

During previews
79
Great acting, Long, Triggering scenes, Long list of characters, Many interconnecting stories

See it if you want to see an SAG play in early formation. One scene after the other of thought-provoking and intense dialogue and stories.

Don't see it if long plays with triggering subjects either bore or disturb you. It could be great with pruning. Lots of characters w/ intense problems

During previews
86
Intense, Edgy, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you like great ensemble acting in an exquisitely-written play. Playwright, Mr. Guirgis, has sure got some chops!

Don't see it if you don't like real 'street' flawed characters on challenging journeys.

Also Guirgis really has a way with dialogue and character development. Also... Read more Read less

During previews
79
Needs editing, Good writing, Indulgent, Too long and undisciplined

See it if Excellent ideas, but it was like attending a workshop. Much too long at 3-1/2 hours. Difficult material handled well but needs work. Preview

Don't see it if Saw its second performance in previews. The material is well written but much of it is extraneous and does not serve what small plot exists.

Also The subject matter is difficult, the writing and acting are strong, bu... Read more Read less

During previews
69
Hard-working actors, Way too long, Stereotypical characters

See it if following the sad plight of people in need touches you.

Don't see it if stereotyped characters would not appeal.

Also All of the actors work so hard but it's sad that these are variations ... Read more Read less

During previews
85
Epic, Intense, Funny, Entertaining, Absorbing

See it if Exactly what you'd expect from a Gurgius play with this title. Cool production (cool set!). fun to get to know all the characters.

Don't see it if A little raunchy, a little hackneyed. Awkward, unsure direction. Wasn't sure if certain performances were off, but I guess its the director.

During previews
75
Entertaining, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Compelling, Humorous

See it if Enjoy SAG's work, his humor, language, ability to draw you into a story, care about its characters and paint a picture of the marginalized.

Don't see it if The length scares you. I found the story and characters interesting so that I did not feel like I was there for more than three hours.

Also Very good performances by a cast, many of whom are SAG vets. Each char... Read more Read less

During previews
79
Ambitious, Intelligent, Entertaining, Absorbing

See it if you're a Guirgis fan

Don't see it if a long play.

During previews
89
Impactful lots to think about compelling, Dated

See it if Stephen Aldy Guirgis writes great works and this left you leaving with so much to think about

Don't see it if you don't like a long show, even though the time flew by so go see it!

Also It was 3 1/2 hours when I saw in previews (15 - 20 minutes shorter tha... Read more Read less

During previews
86
Thought-provoking, Great writing, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if To see a talented cast as denizens of a halfway house deal with substance abuse, anger, LGBTQ issues, despair and hope. Humor & tragedy.

Don't see it if Play is long but moves quickly. Large cast depicting several stories, sexual situations and violent confrontations not for you.

During previews
90
Great acting, Edgy, Funny, Clever, Absorbing

See it if You like urban characters and humor. This play humanizes the dispossessed amongst us.

Don't see it if You are easily offended by cursing and by down and out characters. You are not an empathetic person.

Also Some reviewers criticized this play because of the length (3.25 hours)... Read more Read less

During previews
69
Needs trimming, Ambitious, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Long

See it if You are interested in thoughtful explorations of how homelessness arises

Don't see it if You were hoping for a more well-rounded, multi-faceted, nuanced exploration of this issue

During previews
82
Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Great writing, Absorbing

See it if You want to hear the stories behind our homeless population and the system that is failing them, using the sound and flow of street talk

Don't see it if You cannot handle a play that is a little too long & a rehashing of some familiar stories

During previews
75
Slow, Great writing, Great acting

See it if you can spend 3+ hours on a play that has some of the best dialogue I've ever heard in a play, But isn't fast moving nor plot driven.

Don't see it if if heavy dramas are not to your liking.

Also The dialogue is brilliant. But the story is not. And what story there ... Read more Read less

During previews
76
Raunchy, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Funny, Ambitious

See it if If you appreciate Gurgis, and have tolerance for a work in progress that is much too long

Don't see it if You don't want to see a 3 1/2 hour play with great characters but little plot

Also This would make a great miniseries, but he's trying to accomplish too ... Read more Read less

During previews
90
Edgy, Funny, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if You want to live the lives of those less fortunate with excellent dialogue, characters, actors. Cool staging. Funny and thought provoking.

Don't see it if You don’t want to go on a thorough dive into this world. I was into it as I loved the perspectives and performances. Long but in a good way.

During previews
40
Guirgis needs to find his pruning shears!, Any diamonds here--and there are a few--are buried beneath some very malodorous rough, Relevant, Cliched, Ambitious

See it if you are a super-fan of stephen adly guirgis no matter what he writes

Don't see it if you hate screaming & cursing & (fake) cigarette smoke

Also unfortunately, this is a HOT MESS. perhaps it can be salvaged during p... Read more Read less

During previews
83
Deep, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if You like plays that is deep and talking about realistic issues with women who have dealing with hardship in their lives

Don't see it if You mind nudity, graphic language, triggering scenes; or you want a fluffy show

During previews
90
Slow, Resonant, Great acting, Funny, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy any of Adly Guirgis’ writing and not always happy endings. Great cast of actors as well.

Don't see it if You want to see a shorter show and can’t handle foul language.

Also I LOVED this show, but it needs to be edited and shortened. It went we... Read more Read less

During previews
78
Great writing, Funny, Epic, Loving, Brutal

See it if You want a wide-in-scope, empathetic view on difficult lives in difficult places.

Don't see it if You need short, brief explanations. You need pure catharsis at the end.

Also HALFWAY BITCHES... is as Guirgis as it gets - a lot of fantastic insul... Read more Read less

During previews
86
Great dialogue, Thought-provoking, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if You like good dialogue, from interesting characters, about how some people end up on the street and where society places its priorities.

Don't see it if You want a short play. This one is long, with lots of characters and storylines, some of which are wrapped up and some that just peter out.

Also I thought this show was very ambitious with a large cast, but at the s... Read more Read less

During previews
70
Thought-provoking, Intense, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if If you like plays about social issues and folks living on the edge.

Don't see it if If foul language and social issuses aren't our thing.

Also Disappointed! Love Stephen Guirgis plays. This is too long, needs edit... Read more Read less

During previews
100
Thought-provoking, Resonant, Great writing, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you are a fan of Mr. Guirgis' work and have an ounce of humanity for the disenfranchised.

Don't see it if you can't sit thru a 3 hour 15 min (with intermission) play - but you should see it!

Also Stephen Adly Guirgis’ searing new play is a masterpiece: NO ONE writes... Read more Read less

During previews
77
Very long, Funny, Entertaining

See it if you like Guirgis and like his humor which can be truly very funny.

Don't see it if if you want to see a polished work.

Also I saw this show on the second day of previews and it was 3.5 hours wit... Read more Read less


December 9th, 2019
CRITIC’S PICK. ‘Halfway Bitches’ Review: A Play as Unruly as Life Itself Stephen Adly Guirgis’s bumpy, vibrant and expansive comic drama about a women’s homeless shelter features a cast of 18 (or 19, counting the goat)."
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December 9th, 2019
3/5 Stars. "The structure is loose: a collection of friction between big personalities...Couched in the wit and rhythms of Guirgis's free-flowing banter, their interactions are often diverting, despite their scattershot nature."
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December 20th, 2019
"STEPHEN ADLY GUIRGIS’S WORLD OF BROKEN WOMEN: 'Halfway Bitches Go Straight to Heaven,' Guirgis’s rough-cut gem of a new play, is rich with revelation and barbed empathy."
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December 9th, 2019
"Stephen Adly Guirgis, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of 'Between Riverside and Crazy,' explores the troubled lives of the residents and staffers of a women's halfway house in this world premiere."
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