End Days

by  Deborah Zoe Laufer

Full Length Play, Comedy  /  3m, 2f

Winner! 2008 American Theatre Critics Association Steinberg Citation
"The universality of the denouement brings this comedy full circle, leaving us to admire the relevancy of Laufer's humor and wisdom of her message." – Variety

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    3m, 2f
  • Duration


    90 minutes
  • SubGenre


    Not Applicable
  • Accolades


    Not Applicable
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Appropriate for all audiences

Additional Info

Sixteen year-old Rachel Stein is having a bad year. Her father hasn't changed out of his pajamas since 9/11. Her mother has begun a close, personal relationship with Jesus. Her new neighbor, a sixteen-year-old Elvis impersonator, has fallen for her hard. And the Apocalypse is coming Wednesday. Her only hope is that Stephen Hawking will save them all.


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  • Winner! 2008 American Theatre Critics Association Steinberg Citation


"The universality of the denouement brings this comedy full circle, leaving us to admire the relevancy of Laufer's humor and wisdom of her message. – Variety

"...rapturously funny play about a family trying to survive in a world hurtling toward Armageddon, proves that the right playwright can inspire healing laughter in even the most sobering subjects." – The Miami Herald

"...Both poignantly redemptive and often hilariously funny. I hope others will have the opportunity to see this special play. It begs the question of what we would hold most sacred if we knew the end was near. And it brings to life our broad range of choices, including laughter, and the treasured traveling companions who are there even when we face our own personal Armageddon."" - Huffington Post

"End Days may be about a weirdly dysfunctional family that finds its soul by waiting for the Apocalypse together, but this play has heart: It's engaging, funny as hell and even touching....An exceptional show" - NUVO (Indianapolis)

"A manic whirlwind of a family drama as weird and illuminating and truthful as anything likely to be discovered at CERN. End Days is funnier than a great many plays designed solely to induce laughter, and more touching than most plays designed solely to touch...so redolent of the ordinary wishes of real, lonely human beings that, despite the play's atmosphere of general absurdity, it communicates a heartbreaking truthfulness." - Broward-Palm Beach New Times

"...thought-provoking, not a little disquieting and seriously, encouragingly funny. Laufer's originality in expressing her ideas is impressive. Highly recommended." - CityBeat Arts and Entertainment

"The smartest, most hysterical, laugh-out-loud show you'll see in the theater - ever!...a witty, funny and relevant play." - Martha's Vineyard Plum

"End Days directly pits science, religion and suburbia, but it's not an attack on any of them. There's not a trace of mockery in these extraordinary performances, each tinged with compassion, humor and heartbreak. Laufer is clearly a major new voice" - Denver Post


Performing Groups

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


  • No Special Cautions

License details

  • Minimum Fee: $90 per performance



  • Time Period: Contemporary, New Millennium/21st Century
  • Duration: 90 minutes
  • Setting: The Stein kitchen/den. Late September, 2003.
  • Additional Features: No intermission
  • Features / Contains: Contemporary Costumes / Street Clothes


  • Musical Style: N/A (Not a musical)
  • Vocal Demands: N/A (Not a musical)
  • Chorus Size: N/A (Not a musical)


3m, 2f
RACHEL STEIN - 16, nihilistic Goth. Feels angry and orphaned sing 9/11, as both of her parents have withdrawn into their own worlds.
SYLVIA STEIN - her mother. 40's. Newly Evangelical, with a close, personal relationship to Jesus.
ARTHUR STEIN - her father. 40's. Deeply depressed.
NELSON STEINBERG - also 16. Their new neighbor. Passionate about science, dresses as Elvis, loves Rachel.
JESUS and STEPHEN HAWKING - played by the same actor.
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Cast Attributes

  • Ensemble cast
  • Roles for Teens


Available Services



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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Development of END DAYS was supported by the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center, during a residency at the National Playwrights Conference of 2007. Originally presented by Florida Stage.

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