Leveling Up

by  Deborah Zoe Laufer

Full Length Play, Drama  /  3m, 1f

Three twenty-something roommates are glued to their video games. They are masters of the virtual worlds behind the computer screens in their Las Vegas basement. When one of them uses his gaming skills to land a job with the National Security Agency launching actual drones and missiles, online battles begin to have real consequences.

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    3m, 1f
  • Duration

    Duration

    90 minutes
  • SubGenre

    Subgenre

    Fantasy
  • Accolades

    Accolades

    Not Applicable
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

From the award winning playwright of End Days, Deborah Zoe Laufer, comes a story about three twenty-something roommates who are glued to their video games. They are masters of the virtual worlds behind the computer screens in their Las Vegas basement. When one of them uses his gaming skills to land a job with the National Security Agency launching actual drones and missiles, online battles begin to have real consequences. Leveling Up is a fresh, contemporary look at how we navigate the blurry line between worlds both virtual and real and what it means to grow up.
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Accolades

Reviews

REVIEWS

"Laufer (an award-winning playwright whose widely produced 'End Days' made a terrific impression when staged here by Next Theatre), is such a smart, engaging storyteller, and possesses such a flair for devising characters with highly individual voices, that she can draw you right in, whatever your age" - Chicago Sun Times, Read More

"Leveling Up is an amazing reflection on how technology is changing our world and how we live in it. Laufer understands that it is not the technology or the reality that we choose that is important, but our relationships. Not just for the teens, this is a play that has plenty to offer audiences of all ages. Leveling Up is smart, funny, frightening, poignant and, ultimately, despite its focus on technology, very human." - Chicago Stage Standard, Read More

"Laufer’s coming-of-age tale succeeds as a thought-provoking and powerful insight into why 'leveling up' in life doesn’t just mean defeating your opponent. Topical subject matters are treated in a timeless way, making Leveling Up all the more resonant and relevant ... Laufer’s script is intelligent without being preachy and funny without being goofy or awkward." - Chicago Theater Beat, Read More

"If our theater is eager to reach the next generation—those gamers, texters, Snapchatters, and so on, who were raised in a world where the virtual often overshadows the actual—here's a place to start: produce smart, inquiry-based plays like this one. Deborah Zoe Laufer's Leveling Up raises questions about what it means to make choices in an increasingly disconnected, media-saturated world." - Chicago Reader, Read More

Videos

  • LEVELING UP - Trailer
  • LEVELING UP Premiere at Cincinnati Playhouse
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Considerations

Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Professional Theatre
  • Large Stage
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups

Cautions

  • Caution Alcohol Alcohol
  • Caution Strong Language Strong Language
  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

Production

Details

  • Time Period: Contemporary, Present Day, New Millennium/21st Century
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • Setting: All action takes place in Ian, Chuck, and Zan’s basement game room, save Scene 8, when we see Ian at work.
  • Additional Features: No intermission
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes

Casting

3m, 1f
IAN - Early 20’s. Awesome gamer – Nevada State champ. A bit of a nerd. Very bright.
CHUCK - Ian’s roommate. Early 20’s. All around good guy.
ZANDER - Ian’s other roommate. Early 20’s. Very good looking. A bit of a wheeler dealer.
JEANNIE - Zan’s girlfriend. Very sweet and innocent. Excellent student. 21
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Cast Attributes

  • Ensemble cast
  • Non-Traditional casting

Resources

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Authors

Deborah Zoe Laufer

Deborah Zoe Laufer’s plays have been produced at Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Cleveland Playhouse, Geva Theatre Center, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Actor’s Theatre of Louisville, Portland Stage, and eighty other theaters around the country, in Germany, Russia and Canada. End Days was awarded The ATCA Steinberg ci ...

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Leveling Up received its world premiere at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park in 2013, under the direction of Wendy Goldberg. 

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