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The Christians

From 83 member  reviews
Members say: Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Intelligent, Great acting, Great writing

About the show

The first show in Playwrights Horizon's 15-16 season, 'The Christians' by Lucas Hnath is an idea-packed drama about a pastor of a megachurch whose changing beliefs send his congregation spiraling. More…

Ten years ago, Pastor Paul’s church was a modest storefront. Now it houses thousands, with a coffee shop in the lobby and a baptismal font as big as a swimming pool. But Paul is about to preach a sermon that will shake the foundation of his congregation’s beliefs. Backed by a live choir, 'The Christians' is both epic and unexpectedly intimate, an unflinching look at faith in America — and its power to unite or divide.

Member Reviews (83)


Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Intelligent, Great acting, Great writing

Cliched, Overrated, Slow

See it if you don't care about drama or plot inertia and want to see a thesis played out on stage

Don't see it if you want characters that aren't just a mouthpiece for the playwright and you prefer your theater to actually be theater.

Banal, Cliched, Excruciating, Insipid, Overrated

See it if religious talk is your thing in lecture format.

Don't see it if you've already heard all the religious debates before and rather see something w/ depth and theatricality and something new to say.

Banal, Disappointing, Overrated, Shallow

See it if one performance -- Emily Donahoe's -- is enough for you. Otherwise, you're in for an intrigue-free, flat, and shallow evening of monotony.

Don't see it if're looking for a fresh exploration of theology and spirituality. The Christians strings together cliche after cliche.

During previews
Cliched, Relevant, Disappointing, Thought-provoking

See it if You want to see something that's all philosophy and no action and no resolution

Don't see it if You want to see interesting direction. You are not interested in pondering religious concepts.

September 17th, 2015
"'The Christians,' is the first important new play of the young fall season...It has been ingeniously staged by the director, Les Waters...Mr. Hnath is one of the freshest playwriting voices to emerge in the past five years or so. He’s also an adventurous thinker in terms of style and content...'...
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September 17th, 2015
"Although superbly staged by Les Waters and the use of microphones serves to both amplify and distance the coiled language, Hnath seems to lose nerve as he goes...There are so few plays that take on big moral questions, and Hnath is a serious writer, so I can still recommend 'The Christians,' but...
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September 17th, 2015
"In his extraordinary new play 'The Christians' at Playwrights Horizons, Lucas Hnath grapples with dogma itself...In the strange, superb direction by Les Waters, the distancing elements are amped up. The result is a kind of 'public service': an exurban passion play. The surprise is the passion pa...
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September 17th, 2015
"It's so rare to see religious beliefs depicted onstage without condescension that Lucas Hnath's new play becomes all the more intriguing...'The Christians' is an ambitious, effort that deserves attention. But even though attention must be paid, the work proves disappointing in its overly styliz...
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