For many years I’ve felt that the theater is the closest thing to a church most people will ever encounter. It is one of the last places that exist where a person is invited in, with open arms, and asked - just for an hour or two - to put away what they carry with them and actively practice empathy. A practice that is so deeply, unfathomably important. One that opens us up to a world that is so much larger and more loving and incomprehensible than the one we’re told we live in.
...fits both the space and the mission of Boise Contemporary Theater like a bespoke glove. It’s staging and story fills the old seed warehouse to its brim: a drama performed in astral dance of a service. The confessions, testimonies, confrontations, all unfold in the style of a church service...
I grew up in a church like the one presented on stage… I walked into a familiar landscape tonight and was so beyond touched to see such a real struggle in front of me. One I’ve had. One my mother confronted as her father was dying. One exceedingly difficult to grapple with.
This is the kind of work that sits with you for years, sneaking up unexpectedly to make you reconsider, long after the show has closed. This is the kind of work that I want to be a part of. Tonight made me feel just how much I miss the theater and how much I appreciate the work that you are bringing to us. It is a gift to create this kind of show. It is a gift to all of us who get to sit in the question and the hurt and the struggle.
April 19 - May 6, 2023
by Lucas Hnath
April 19 - May 6, 2023
Run Time: Approximately 80 minutes with NO intermission
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.
“I have a powerful urge to communicate with you, but I find the distance between us insurmountable.”
“I overheard patrons debating the theological points the play raises with an interest and urgency that affirmed both Hnath’s approach to telling this particular story and the power, in general, of storytelling on stage.”
–Erin Keane, 89.3 WFPL
“When theatre works best, it’s… like being locked in a room where a horrible argument is happening. Church is a lot like theatre. …The Christians is a serious play, with serious craft and serious aspirations. It doesn’t have a “message” or a point of view on salvation to proclaim. It’s a harrowing dig through our hearts, a play about our deepest and, often, most noble desires and motivations and yearnings—it just also happens to take place in a place many Americans frequent every week and believe in deeply. …Church splits are hell. This play about one isn’t.”
–paraphrased from Christianity Today
“[Hnath] exerts pressure on every argument and counterargument, trusting the audience to judge their strengths and weaknesses. Similarly he humanises each of his characters while also letting them occasionally look ridiculous, careful not to overbalance anyone’s moral and rhetorical scales. This is a play asking legitimately difficult questions about belief and behaviour…”
“Highly theatrical and yet intimate at the same time… …blurs the line between church and theatre. …Hnath’s masterful use of language illuminates the showmanship and the faltering of a pastor caught between preserving what he believes to be true or the church that he’s dedicated his life to building. With richly layered and authentic characters, The Christians is an immersive look at the cost of internal politics.”
“Sincere, complex, nuanced…exploration of a crisis of leadership, and thus of faith. One of the most interesting, focused, counterintuitive and intellectually compelling playwrights of our moment. Does not waste a word.”
– Chicago Tribune
“Immersive, timeless, thought provoking work of drama. The Christians is done so well I had a hard time not automatically bowing my head and joining in the prayers.”
– Northwest Herald
Lucas Hnath for Playwrights Horizons on the function THE CHRISTIANS:
Did you catch director Benjamin Burdick on Idaho Matters? Listen to Gemma Gaudette on Boise State Public Radio:
Wednesday & Thursday – 7:00pm
Friday & Saturday – 8:00pm
Matinee – 2:00pm
Special Performance Dates
Apr 19 – 21
Pay What You Want Night:
Apr 19 & Apr 28
Apr 28 & May 6 matinee
First Thursday Happy Hour:
May 4, 5-6 pm
Content and Stage Effects Advisory
BCT does not proactively offer advisories about subject matter, as sensitivities vary from person to person.
If you have any questions about content, age-appropriateness or stage effects (such as strobe lights or theatrical fog) that might have a bearing on patron comfort, please contact the box office at 208.331.9224 or email@example.com.
22|23 Preview Performances
(First Wednesday, Thursday, & Friday prior to Opening Night)
All Seats – $28
22|23 Regular Performances
Section A – $45
Section B – $38
Section C – $32
22|23 Student Tickets
As part of our commitment to keeping theater accessible to everyone, we will continue to offer discounted students tickets to anyone with a valid Student ID. Student Tickets are valid in any available seating area.
All Student Seats – $18
*Prices do not include applicable taxes and fees
Seating prices are based
on where you sit.
Seats are divided into 4 sections:
Section A, Section B, Section C,
and the BCT BOX.
All seating prices will be based on the Section where your tickets are located regardless of day.
Click on the seating chart below to see the seating sections.
*Preview Performances and Student Tickets will be continue to be priced at a single discounted rate and will not be seated according to section.