The Christians

The Christians

Sponsored by:
  • The Humana Foundation

March 4 - April 6, 2014

Run Time: 75 minutes
There will be no intermission.

by Lucas Hnath
directed by Les Waters
commissioned by Actors Theatre of Louisville

Sometimes it’s really hard to really know which voice is God, and which one is your wishful self.

Twenty years ago, Pastor Paul’s church was nothing more than a modest storefront. Now he presides over a congregation of thousands, with classrooms for Sunday School, a coffee shop in the lobby, and a baptismal font as big as a swimming pool. Today should be a day of celebration. But Paul is about to preach a sermon that will shake the foundations of his church’s belief. A big-little play about faith in America—and the trouble with changing your mind.

Lucas Hnath’s plays include Red Speedo (Studio Theatre, Washington, D.C.), A Public Reading of an Unproduced Screenplay About the Death of Walt Disney (Soho Rep.), nightnight as part of Sleep Rock Thy Brain (2013 Humana Festival), Isaac’s Eye (Ensemble Studio Theatre), Death Tax (2012 Humana Festival, Royal Court Theatre), and The Courtship of Anna Nicole Smith (Actors Theatre of Louisville). He has been awarded the 2012 Whitfield Cook Award for Isaac’s Eye and a 2013 Steinberg/ATCA New Play Award Citation for Death Tax. Hnath has been a resident playwright at New Dramatists since 2011 and is also a member of Ensemble Studio Theatre. He received both his B.F.A. and M.F.A. from New York University’s Department of Dramatic Writing and is a lecturer in NYU’s Expository Writing Program.


  • Audience Advisory: None.
  • Age Recommendation: Ages 15+ (Grades 10+)
The Christians was commissioned by Actors Theatre of Louisville and was developed through a Creativity Fund at New Dramatists, as well as through a workshop at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.


What the critics are saying about The Christians

“Hnath’s deft writing and Waters’ well-hewed direction help “The Christians” reveal how stagecraft works to beguile those under its spell to disassociate themselves from their gut-feelings and maintain a veneer of control — particularly in a rapidly changing and daunting world.” –Elizabeth Kramer, Courier-Journal

“Ultimately, “The Christians” struggles with big questions of salvation and grace without ever definitively delivering a writer’s verdict. And so this is a play that people of faiths of all stripes, as well as nonbelievers, can engage with on a meaningful level.” –Erin Keane, WFPL

“Stories placed in such an overtly religious context can divide theatregoers, but The Christians walks a fine line by managing to be a drama that examines faith but that proves fulfilling wherever your beliefs position you in society.” –Keith Waits,



For Accessibility information, call the Box Office at 502-584-1205 or email

Actors Theater of Louisville
316 West Main St.
Louisville, KY 40202
Box Office: 502.584.1205
502.371.0956 TDD

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