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On the Exhale

From 66 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Relevant, Intense, Thought-provoking

About the show

Roundabout Theatre Company presents the world premiere of a provocative one-woman drama exploring one of our country’s most divisive—and urgent—issues: gun violence. Starring Tony nominee Marin Ireland. More…

When a senseless act of violence changes her life forever, a liberal college professor finds herself inexplicably drawn to the very weapon used to perpetrate the crime—and to the irresistible feeling of power that comes from holding life and death in her hands. Peering down the barrel of a uniquely American crisis, she begins to suspect that when it comes to gun violence, we’re all part of the problem.

Member Reviews (66)


Great acting, Absorbing, Relevant, Intense, Thought-provoking
Avg Score

Great acting, Absorbing, Disappointing, Thought-provoking, Relevant

See it if The incomparable Marin Ireland keeps us riveted to Zimmerman's gun violence tale even as the tale itself grows taller & taller

Don't see it if Zimmerman loses audience by asking us to believe in a gimmicky plot devise. Silverman ably directs but again Marin has us at the first word

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

See it if you like one woman shows and Marin Ireland especially, you are interested in explorations of gun tragedies and community reactions

Don't see it if you don't want to be reminded of gun massacres or can't stand one person plays

Let's face it: marin ireland is queen of off-broadway

See it if 4 brilliant shape-shifting solo performance by Ireland, moving from conversational pose 2 red-hot avenging angel vs assault weapons

Don't see it if well-crafted but not altogether convincing script; this is NOT the play that is going to change people's minds about gun control

Confusing, Disappointing

See it if Well acted drama...

Don't see it if ...but confusing as it keeps going back and forth between dream & reality and confusing poetic language.

Intense, Absorbing, Edgy, Great acting

See it if you enjoy intense dramas. You want to see a superb performance by Marin Ireland.

Don't see it if you don't enjoy intense dramas. Or if you don't like short plays—this one lasts about one hour.

Absorbing, intelligent, thought-provoking, Very relevant and surprising., Marin ireland is very fine.

See it if Like compact solo shows that keep you riveted about our relationship to guns/violence. The story builds well. Marin is skillful and great.

Don't see it if The subject makes you uncomfortable, don't like solo shows with spare set and NO props. It's sad, but not graphic. Emotional and powerful.

Absorbing, Great acting, Relevant, Intense, Thought-provoking

See it if if you want to see one of our finest actresses in a wrenching solo performance in a piece about our complex relationship to gun violence.

Don't see it if you don't like one person shows, if you are looking for a carefree evening or if you think a 60-minute piece is not worth going out for.

Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Profound, Relevant

See it if you can enjoy a one woman monologue about the effects of gun violence in her life. This is a passionate and disturbing piece of theater.

Don't see it if you totally dislike one-actor shows; you strongly believe that all gun ownership is a Constitutional right, no matter what the consequences

Absorbing, Great acting, Great lighting, Intense, Important

See it if you like serious drama. Ireland is absolutely brilliant in this important piece of theatre. Now, more than ever, we need to hear this.

Don't see it if you only like big brassy musicals and hate anything that touches you and makes you think.

Heartbreaking, Great acting, Relevant, Absorbing, Great writing

See it if you're interested in plays about relevant social issues and want to see an incredible performance by Marin Ireland

Don't see it if you hate monologues regardless of how spectacular the writing and acting are, you want to see a play with a fancy set

Ambitious, Resonant, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Great acting

See it if a heartrending one-woman tour de force appeals to you. Marin Ireland is indescribably sublime in a performance that will stay with you.

Don't see it if you died that day. I can't think of another valid reason not to see this.

Riveting performance, Prolix, Intense, Relatable

See it if An empty stage on which a woman who examines her psyche deeply but cannot know what she is capable of shares her grief and ensuing behavior

Don't see it if Affecting but over-written, didactic and over-directed. Not a moment of unexpressed emotion and nothing left for audience interpretation

Absorbing, Well-performed, Intense, Stark, Raw

See it if you're willing to spend 60 minutes at an intense, emotional, and sometimes eerie one-woman show about the aftermath of a school-shooting.

Don't see it if you dislike solo-performances, want something more lighthearted, or grow uneasy when it comes to topics of child-death and gun-usage.

Also The fierce and gripping one-hour performance by Marin Ireland in a bas... Read more Read less

Must see, Intense, Relevant, Great acting, Great writing

See it if Do! This compelling solo piece lulls & plants you, powerfully, vividly into the arena of gun violence. Transformative, poignant experience.

Don't see it if grief for gun violence victims fresh. Who should not be exempt: members of Congress & all w/ means to work toward eradicating gun violence.

Also So grateful to see this on Broadway HD channel late February '18. I ha... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Edgy, Resonant, Intense, Great acting

See it if you want an emotional gut punch about the prevelance and outcomes of gun violence in America.

Don't see it if gun talk or parental tragedy make you uneasy. The subject matter is tough, and the intimate theater makes it that much more profound.

Disappointing, Great acting, Relevant, Slow

See it if You like to see a good actress

Don't see it if You like more characters in a play.

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

See it if you want to see one of the best stage actresses of our time doing her thing in a very intimate space

Don't see it if you can't sit still and focus on one person for an hour, or if you're sensitive to descriptions and explorations of gun violence.

Excruciating, Intense, Intelligent, Relevant, Powerful

See it if you want to see a provocative, painful play addressing guns in our society.

Don't see it if you prefer comedies or musicals.

Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Masterful, Resonant

See it if you want to see a powerful performance by Marin Ireland in a heart-wrenching solo show.

Don't see it if you don't want to feel the pain of a victim of gun violence.

Riveting, Resonant, Profound, Must see, Great writing

See it if you want to be moved by one of the best written/performed solo works I've ever seen! Astonishing all around.

Don't see it if you are looking for a big spectacle. It is extremely intimate and intense.

Ambitious, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Profound, Absorbing

See it if You want to see a very intense monologue about a very current topic ( gun violence in schools )

Don't see it if You don't want re-live recent facts about a massacre of school children

Absorbing, Great acting, Intelligent, Intense, Relevant

See it if you like one person monologues. The story draws you in and spits you out. Marin Ireland is wonderful.

Don't see it if You probably should se this both for the actor's work and the story

Relevant, Resonant, Intelligent, Great acting

See it if you like good acting and the human condition.

Don't see it if you are triggered by gun violence.

Intense, Riveting, Thought-provoking, Great acting, Great writing

See it if You enjoy exquisite acting by a solo performer, you wish to grapple with gun violence, grief, parenthood, feminist identity.

Don't see it if Trigger warnings: discussion of mass shootings, gun violence, school shootings, gas-lighting.

Absorbing, Ambitious, Great writing, Great acting, Edgy

See it if I wouldn't change a thing - this is monologue writing and perf at its very best. Writing is Pulitzer-worthy & Marin takes us on a wild ride

Don't see it if you're the quintessential NRA enthusiast.

February 19th, 2017
"As directed with characteristic sensitivity by the ever-busy Leigh Silverman, ‘On the Exhale’ provides a welcome opportunity to see an artist of Ms. Ireland’s caliber take a character through the stages of grief…It’s a brave and bold premise for a play. And if ‘On the Exhale’ never quite fulfill...
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February 21st, 2017
"As a moral construct, 'On the Exhale' has weight, but as a play, it falters. Zimmerman is skilled: he shows a cinematic attention to detail and has a clever way of using storytelling techniques to shift focus and keep us disoriented. But ultimately, the characterization rings false...Ireland's t...
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February 19th, 2017
"Dealing with the issue of gun violence in America in compelling fashion, ‘On the Exhale’ never feels like it’s preaching to the choir...Maintaining a relentless tension without lapsing into histrionics or melodrama, ‘On the Exhale’ makes its points succinctly and intelligently. Ireland, one of N...
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February 21st, 2017
"Composed in a lucid style by Martín Zimmerman and unobtrusively directed by Leigh Silverman, the material is sometimes too lumbering in convincing us of the professor’s 180-turn towards gun nuttery...But New York stage veteran Ireland gives a characteristically live-wire, throttling performance....
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