Now available for production worldwide:

based on the novel by Cory Doctorow
adapted by Josh Costello

full-length (115 minutes)
three actors (one female, two male; breakdown below)
minimal set

17-year-old hacker Marcus plays electronic cat and mouse games while skipping school in San Francisco. When the city is the victim of a terrorist attack, he finds himself in the wrong place at the wrong time, and is suddenly apprehended by the Department of Homeland Security for days of merciless interrogation. When no one besides his friends believes his story, Marcus is left with only one option: take down the system himself. LITTLE BROTHER is a near-future thriller, a teenage romance, and a frightening predictor of things to come. Based on the acclaimed and best-selling YA novel by tech celebrity Cory Doctorow. Full synopsis below.

Download Script Sample (all rights reserved).

Large-cast version for school productions also available.

For all inquiries, please contact Josh Costello at

Reviews from the 2012 world premiere production at Custom Made Theatre Company, San Francisco:

“It’s a tense, power-packed play with some hilarious lines and stirring speeches, eloquent, touching and infuriating in all the right places. The show’s not just a pleasure to watch; it’s also a bit of due diligence that just may help preserve your democracy.” (Top Ten of 2012)
-Sam Hurwitt, Marin Independent-Journal

“This is the best kind of political theatre. Thought provoking, suspenseful, emotionally real, uncomfortably close to the hard truth.”
Charles Kruger,

“Probably the most exciting thing on stage right now.”  (one of the best of 2012)
-Robert Avila, SF Bay Guardian

Nominated for the 2012 Steinberg/ATCA New Play award

collected reviews (PDF)

more reviews

video from the premiere production

photos from the premiere production

Character Breakdown

Three actors, presumably actors in their twenties who look young enough to play teenagers.

MARCUS – 17, male, white. Too smart for his own good, and more charismatic than he realizes.

ANGE – 17, female, any ethnicity. Even smarter than Marcus, and she knows it. In telling the story, Ange also plays many other characters, including Mom, a military interrogator, a teacher, a cop, and more.

DARRYL – 17, male, not white. Sweet and sensitive. In telling the story, Darryl also plays many other characters, including Dad, Vice-Principal Benson, a rock star named Trudy Doo, various soldiers and cops, and more.


Little Brother is a three-actor adaptation of the bestselling novel by tech celebrity Cory Doctorow. In the play, three teenagers tell their story to the audience, playing themselves as well as all the other characters.

Marcus, Darryl, and Ange are cutting class when terrorists attack San Francisco. The three teens are swept up by the Department of Homeland Security in the aftermath of the attack; they are detained and Marcus is subjected to harsh interrogation. Marcus and Ange are released with a warning to keep quiet about what has happened to them; Darryl is not released. Marcus discovers that the DHS has imposed a crackdown on the city — surveillance cameras are everywhere, cops are tracking people’s movements, and his laptop has been bugged. Using various real-life countersurveillance methods, Marcus and Ange start an online resistance movement dedicated to civil liberties and to winning Darryl’s freedom. Act One ends with Marcus and Ange’s first date – an illegal concert in Dolores Park that gets broken up by cops with tear gas.

In Act Two, the resistance has grown beyond Marcus’s control and the DHS has imposed even more restrictive security measures. Ange argues with Marcus when he tries to slow down the resistance in order to keep the teens who idolize him out of jail. Darryl manages to get a letter smuggled out to Marcus, revealing the location of the secret prison where he and other teenagers are being held. Marcus makes up with Ange, and they hold an online press conference inside a multiplayer video game to reveal the truth. Marcus and Ange sleep together; the first time for each of them. They agree to go into hiding, but on their way out of town they are swept up in a massive protest — the result of their press conference the night before — and Marcus is arrested again. Marcus is waterboarded, but then California state troopers burst in and put a stop to it — the governor, as a result of the press conference, has ordered the DHS out of the state. Marcus finds Darryl in his cell.

  1. Just sent you an email regarding a school production. Thank you for sharing this with the theater community.

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