The Improv Handbook
The Ultimate Guide to Improvising in Comedy, Theater, and BeyondBook - 2008
The most comprehensive, smart, helpful and inspiring guide to improve available today. Applicable to comedians, actors, public speakers and anyone who needs to think on their toes.
From The Improv Handbook :
The problem for improvisers is anxiety. faced with a lot of nameless eyes staring at us, and feeling more than anything else like prey, we are likely to want to display very consistent behavior, so that anyone who looks at us, looks away and then looks back sees the same thing. Thus we become boring, we fade into the background, and we cease to be of interest.
T he Improv Handbook provides everything someone interested in improvisational comedy needs to know, as written by a husband and wife comedy duo with years of experience and teaching in the field. in addition to providing a comprehensive history of improvisational theater as a backdrop, it also looks at modern theories and practices of improvisation on a global scale, including how the form of comedy has evolved differently in different parts of the world, from Europe to the UK to the Chicago scene. The Improv Handbook also contains an essential performance segment that details different formats of improvisation. Chapter topics include Theatresports, Micetro, Gorilla Theatre, and the inventions of Keith Johnstone and Del Close as well as other popular forms of improv, like those on "Whose Line is it Anyway." The core section of the book is called simply, "How to Improvise" and delves into issues of spontaneity, the fundamentals of storytelling, working together, upping the ante, and character development. The book concludes with sections on how to improvise in front of an audience and- just as crucially- how to attract an audience in the first place.