Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre

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A&C Black, Jun 29, 2007 - Drama - 208 pages
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"A hundred practical techniques for encouraging spontaneity and originality by catching the subconscious unawares…here is an inexhaustible supply of zany suggestions for unfreezing the petrified imagination" Daily Telegraph

A leading figure in the theatre, Keith Johnstone lays bare his techniques and exercises to foster spontaneity and narrative skill for actors. These techniques and exercises were evolved in the actors' studio, when he was Associate Director of the Royal Court and then in demonstrations to schools and colleges and ultimately in the founding of a company of performers called The Theatre Machine.

Divided into four sections, "Status", "Spontaneity", "Narrative Skills" and "Masks and Trance", arranged more or less in the order a group might approach them, the book sets out the specific approaches which Johnstone has himself found most useful and most stimulating. The result is a fascinating exploration of the nature of spontaneous creativity.

"If teachers were honoured in the British theatre along-side directors, designers and playwrights, Keith Johnstone would be as familiar a name as are those of…Jocelyn Herbert, Edward Bond and other young talents who were drawn to the great lodestone of the Royal Court Theatre in the late 1950s. As head of the script department, Johnstone played a crucial part in the development of the 'writers' theatre…" Irving Wardle

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Mark.Eckersley - LibraryThing

A great book that hasn't dated. It has great improvisation games and the author is the real inventor of theatresports when he went to live in Vancouver. The mask stuff is still a great introduction to mask work and the devising theatre descriptions are still priceless. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - meta87 - LibraryThing

I found tons of interesting and useful information in this book not only about improv and acting, but social situations and interacting with others. I would recommend this book to teachers especially ... Read full review

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About the author (2007)

Keith Johnstone is an internationally recognized authority in the field of improvisation. His books Impro, and Impro For Storytellers, have been translated into many languages. He leads master classes in improvisation around the world.

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