The Upright Citizens Brigade Comedy Improvisation Manual

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Comedy Council of Nicea, LLC, 2013 - Comedy - 384 pages
2 Reviews
The Upright Citizens Brigade Comedy Improvisation Manual is a comprehensive guide to the UCB style of long form comedy improvisation. Written by UCB founding members Matt Besser, Ian Roberts, and Matt Walsh, the manual covers everything from the basics of two person scene work (with a heavy emphasis on finding "the game" of the scene), to the complexities of working within an ensemble to perform long form structures, such as "The Harold" and "The Movie". A practical "how to" book, the guide provides exercises throughout to help the reader master each new concept and technique introduced. While the manual is written to be understood by beginners with no previous exposure to improvisational comedy, experienced improvisors will find it to be an excellent resource for honing their skills, clarifying concepts, and generally taking their work to a higher level.

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Clearly the reviewer who said, "You are forced to buy this if you study comedy at the UCB theater in Los Angeles. It's primary writer, Matt B, is an aging stoner who needs money." is a bitter stand-up comedian without the attention and focus to approach improvisation as an art form.
I, too, make all of my students buy this book even though I don't get a cut of Matt's money. I've read many books on Improv (Truth in Comedy, Impro, Mick Napier's "Improvisation") and although they were interesting reads, I never felt any of them were worth owning and passing along to my students.
The UCB Improvisational manual is FINALLY the seminal work on long-form improvisation that everyone practicing long-form should read and own. It finishes the journey the Del Close started when trying to define what works about improv as performance and what doesn't.
This is truly the perfect book on long-form improvisation.
 

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

You are forced to buy this if you study comedy at the UCB theater in Los Angeles. It's primary writer, Matt B, is an aging stoner who needs money. In Germany, in the years of militarization after the Olympics in Berlin but before the outbreak of total war, every married couple under the aegis of the Reich was "gifted" a copy of Mein Kampf. Of course, each copy had been bought by the state, and so it not only became an international best seller, but also an institutional device. 

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