The Hang NYC Reviews and Tickets

(7 Reviews)
Members say
Great singing, Quirky, Delightful, Entertaining, Enchanting

A ritual celebration of queerness, questions, and the eternity of a moment.

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Member Reviews (7)

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585 Reviews | 220 Followers
Joyous, Delightful, Refreshing, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if You love Mac, downtown theatre/cabaret/jazz, and don’t mind a colorfully nonsensical show, so long as it makes you happy.

Don't see it if You’re looking for structure, story, or audience interaction like Mac’s other works. This is basically a jazzy ensemble cabaret.

372 Reviews | 43 Followers
Indulgent, Fluffy, Cliched, Enchanting

See it if are a Taylor Mac fan. Fun though a bit too long. Cast is enjoying themselves.

Don't see it if want a better story. This is very loose and very home-spun let's put together a show feel.

322 Reviews | 84 Followers
Unique, Must see, Great singing, Enchanting, Delightful

See it if You enjoy jazz, non-traditional musical theatre, pageantry, and all things fabulous.

Don't see it if You dislike pieces without a typical book-musical structure. Read more

103 Reviews | 18 Followers
Fails to soar, alas….

See it if you’re a Taylor Mac devotee and missed him dearly during the pandemic. Take a Big Easy funeral and throw in a little downtown Hadestown.

Don't see it if you want a story and musical score that will get you hooked. This just didn’t gel for me despite some great moments and brilliant costumes. Read more

84 Reviews | 16 Followers
Quirky, Edgy, Exquisite costumes and sets, Great singing

See it if you'd enjoy a musical take on the death of Socrates. A feast for the eyes (costumes, sets) and ears (great singing). Music a little bland.

Don't see it if you need a coherent, structured musical. Great visuals and some great moments but it didn't ultimately soar for me.

25 Reviews | 2 Followers
Excellent costumes, Quirky, Great staging, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you love Taylor Mac shows. It is fun despite the somewhat grim topic.

Don't see it if You hate color.

19 Reviews | 1 Follower
Slow, Great singing, Ambitious

See it if you appreciate beautiful costumes and makeup, great musicians and orchestrations, and queer culture

Don't see it if you want memorable tunes or lyrics or a coherent plot or message.

Critic Reviews (7)

The New York Times
January 23rd, 2022

"CRITIC’S PICK...With Mac (who wrote the book and lyrics) as a benevolent Socrates, thinking on virtue and sharing the spotlight with the rest of the large cast and an eight-piece band led by Ray (who wrote the music), this show is willfully amoebic in form: an act of resistance to structure from the team who created Mac’s ultra-structured masterpiece, “A 24-Decade History of Popular Music.” It is also very, very downtown, and movingly so if that is the kind of theater that feeds you: an intimate space, an enormous amount of talent, a pile-on of eye-popping design, all in service of a work of art that wants nothing to do with the mainstream."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
January 23rd, 2022

"For the most part, Mac’s The Hang is the peacocky type. You could describe it as a postmodern jazz opera, with thrilling music by Matt Ray, or you could think of it as a drag extravaganza dedicated to matters of the spirit. Whichever it is, it imagines the final moments of Socrates, sentenced to death in 399 B.C.E. for blasphemy and “corrupting the youth.” In his defense, Socrates zinged his fellow Athenians as hypocrites and fools, which got him a drink of hemlock. Socrates died as he lived: Instead of lamenting, he and his friends spent his final hours talking about how to live a life of virtue, even as the poison crept through his system."
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January 23rd, 2022

"And so it is with extreme gratitude that I now report that my first truly great night at the theater following the return of in-person performances was at Mac's The Hang, now delighting and astounding audiences at HERE. Originally part of the Prototype Festival of experimental opera (which was canceled in the wake of the Omicron surge) The Hang depicts the final hours in the life of Socrates through 100 minutes of operatic jazz. Mac wrote the book and lyrics (and stars as Socrates), while the music is by Matt Ray, Mac's collaborator on the epic 24-Decade History of Popular Music. From the moment percussionist Joel Mateo strikes up a cymbal roll, The Hang grabs hold of your imagination and doesn't let go."
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New York Stage Review
January 23rd, 2022

"Though shorter in length and smaller in scale than that play—not to mention Mac’s Pulitzer-shortlisted opus, A 24-Decade History of Popular Music—Hang is similarly extravagant, bawdy (if not nearly as gory as Gary) and challenging, packed with jokes and insights that can occasionally, in this case, seem strained in their cleverness. As usual, though, Mac is less interested in cerebral bombast than in thoroughly satiating our souls and senses.""
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January 25th, 2022

After a grand Pippin-style introductory opening, one exhilarating number follows another in acclaimed theater maker Taylor Mac’s The Hang. Derived from jazz and opera, this vibrant musical fantasia is inspired by the Greek philosopher Socrates’ last hours in 399 BC Athens. He’d been sentenced to death by drinking the poison hemlock for “corrupting the youth” and “impiety.” The show is based on his student Plato’s account of these events. As there’s a homoerotic strain to the Greek philosophical milieu, The Hang has a raucous queer vibe.
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New York Theater
February 3rd, 2022

The Hang is terrific entertainment. It is a jazz opera, performed by a wondrous nine-member ensemble and versatile eight-piece band… It’s a pageant of dazzling drag couture…It’s an exercise in excess, a celebration of queerness, a downtown party welcoming us all back... But “The Hang” is billed as the final hours in the life of Socrates, as imagined by instigator, lyricist, librettist and star Taylor Mac. hat’s harder to embrace
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The Wrap
January 23rd, 2022

"This blissfully bizarre new opera, with book and lyrics by Mac and music by Matt Ray, dazzles immediately — with the cast of nine getting to wear fabulous outfits by Machine Dazzle. The designer also uses what tulle, sequins and crepe was left over to dress up the gaudy womb-like set."
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