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The Improv Handbook

The Improv Handbook
Your Price: $32.95 CDN
Author: Tom Salinsky and Deborah Frances-White
Publisher: Continuum
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 425
Pub. Date: 2008
ISBN-10: 0826428584
ISBN-13: 9780826428585

About the Book:

The Improv Handbook is a comprehensive, smart, helpful and inspiring guide to this thrilling art form. Applicable to comedians, actors, public speakers and anyone who needs to think on their toes.

Subtitled The Ultimate Guide to Improvising in Comedy, Theatre, and Beyond, this book 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 theatre 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. Authors Tom Salinsky and Deborah Frances-White conclude with sections on how to improvise in front of an audience and — just as crucially — how to attract an audience in the first place.

What people say:

"The book can serve as both a scholarly resource, since it covers the history of improvisation from its beginnings to the present, and a practical guide, for the beginner and advanced improviser... The authors include interviews with ten leading international improvisers, and they conclude with an appendix that details many of the most common improvisational games used in academic and professional settings. This book is a must for institutions supporting theater and performance programs. Summing Up: Highly recommended. All readers, all levels." — Choice

About the Author

Tom Salinsky and Deborah Frances-White are a husband and wife comedy duo who founded The Spontaneity Shop. They have performed improvisation for The Royal Court, The RSC Summer Season, The Gilded Balloon at the Edinburgh Festival, and at the Bloomsbury Theatre. They have toured the world and performed at many comedy festivals by invitation. They teach at RADA, The Actors Centre, The National Youth Theatre, and many other colleges and institutions, as well as their own successful workshop program.