Second City Almanac of Improvisation
In The Second City Almanac of Improvisation, Anne Libera collects
the diverse ideas, viewpoints, and memories of a vast array of teachers, actors,
and directors who all got their start at the legendary comedy theatre. Libera
puts each essay in context to give readers an understanding of how The Second
City method of improv-based comedy has become the industry standard. Softcover,
196 pp. $37.50.
Improv is it Anyway? Beyond Second City
Amy E. Seham
This inside look at the evolution of improv-comedy in Chicago reveals the struggles,
the laughter, and the ideals of mutual support, freedom, and openness that
have inspired many performers. Drawing on the experiences of working improvisers, Whose
Improv is it Anyway? provides a never-before-published account of developments
beyond Second City's mainstream approach to the genre. Softcover, 258 pp. $33.95.
Drama Games and Improvs: Games for the Classroom and Beyond
Justine Jones & Mary Ann Kelley
This handy book provides a semester-long curriculum of drama games and improvs,
classroom-tested and proven to be intellectually stimulating and creatively successful.
You'll find it useful for a variety of creative situations--the drama classroom,
rehearsals, or as creative prompts for original student plays. Softcover, 223
Improvisation in Drama
Anthony Frost & Ralph Yarrow
Improvisation in Drama was the first book to offer a unified view of dramatic improvisation and to assess fully the significance of the teaching work of Jacques Lecoq. Now thoroughly revised, expanded and updated, this new edition provides a wide-ranging examination of a field whose importance has become increasingly recognized in contemporary performance practice. Softcover, 269 pp. $29.95.
The Improvisation Game
Illustrated throughout with excercises and techniques, The Improvisation
Game conducts a fascinating and provocative investigation into
the wellsprings of improvisation in theatre, dance and music. Chris
Johnston talks to more than forty key practitioners in the field -
such figures as Keith Johnstone, Max Stafford-Clark, Tim Etchells,
and many other influential people. Softcover, 363 pp. $32.00.
At Play: Teaching Teenagers Theater
Drawing on her own experiences teaching inner-city children in
the groundbreaking musical Runaways and teaching the techniques
of improv theater in schools around the country, as well as on
her own background in experimental theater, Swados provides a step-by-step
guide to bringing out the natural creativity and enthusiasm key
for young people to create -- and enjoy -- improvisational theater.
Softcover, 269 pp. $17.50.
Improvisation for Actors and Writers
Beginning writers and actors need not look any further than this guidebook
for improv comedy lessons. Softcover, 191 pp. $17.95.
Exploring Character gives you real-life scenarios that will get students
talking about integrity, kindness, trustworthiness, courage, goodwill,
openness, industriousness, cooperation, and friendship. The activities
and discussion points will help to develop values, choices and behavior;
spark open-ended discussion and individual reflection; and involve
your students in thinking seriously about the elements that make
up the character of a responsible person. Softcover, 156 pp. $19.95.
Art by Committee: A Guide to Advanced Improvisation
Charna Halpern, the co-creator of long-form improvisation with her partner,
the late Del Close, has changed the face of improvisational comedy forever.
In this new book, she offers advanced instruction in the art of comedic
improvisation. No performer will want to be without this authoritative
book, which includes a DVD. Softcover with DVD, 136 pp. $22.95.
Patricia Ryan Madson
Whether it's dealing with a demanding boss, a tired child, or one
of life's never-ending surprises, Improv Wisdom shows
how to apply the maxims of improvisational theatre to real-life challenges.
Patricia Madson distills thirty years of experience into thirteen
simple strategies to help
loosen up, think on their feet, and take on everything life has to
offer with skill, chutzpah, and a sense of humour. Hardcover,
159 pp. $20.00.
101 Improv Games for Children & Adults
For ages 5 and up, this book explains how to use improv to encourage
imagination, spontaneity, and creative expression. The 101 Improv Games
range from easy warm-ups to basic scenes, character games, games involving
teamwork and more. Softcover, 176 pp. $19.50.
Improv for Actors
This insightful guide shows actors, teachers, and students how
to develop specific improvisation skills that guarantee improv performances
and scripted theatre that are alive, exciting, and a unique expression
of those involved. Herein you'll learn how to release your own spontaneity,
fully engage with your partner's choices, create a rehearsal space
that is safe, fun and inviting, develop effective tools for storytelling,
explore characters through status work, and much more. Softcover, 247
Group Improvisation: The Manual of Ensemble Improv Games
This is the essential manual for ensemble improv games. Included
are more than forty games and exercises to help assist bonding, focus,
awareness, creation, energy,
and dynamics. Softcover, 91 pp. $16.95.
Improv! A Handbook for the Actor
by Greg Atkins
The book is designed for use by both actors, directors and teachers.
The introductory chapters explore the basics of improvisation and drama
while the bulk of the book is devoted to exercises which may be used
for almost any age group. The exercises are grouped under such headings
"Trust Exercises," "Working Together as an Ensemble"
and "Warm-ups." A large part of the book is devoted to the
idea of "Playwrighting on Your Feet," and exploring character
development, plotlines, and motivation. Softcover, $18.95.
Learning Through Drama
by David Booth & Charles Lundy
The book, designed as a student textbook, is divided into five sections,
each of which contains an introductory essay, a Workshop, and a page
for journal writing.
Section one is about getting yourself prepared for the drama work,
while Section two prepares the whole group for the drama process.
These two sections are filled
with games and activities that can be played and worked with for
their own sake. Section three is about the difference between playing
yourself and playing a role,
and in Section four the student will cross over into the drama itself.
The last part of the book, "Drama Projects," offers a few suggestions
for exploring the performance aspects of theatre. Coil-bound, large-format
Also by David Booth:
- Interpretation Coil-bound, large-format softcover --
by Andy Goldberg
Offers a lively presentation of the building blocks of improv comedy ¹ characterization,
plot, and environment ¹ as well as an extensive collection of progressive scene setups
and exercises. The author includes an introductory section on some of the pitfalls
to watch for, as well as some general rules for successful improvising. The second
section of the book discusses ways to construct an improv show and/or a capable comedy
troupe. The third section of the book is comprised of exercises and scene setups,
with hints on how to use them.
Softcover, $21.50 I/S (1991).
Improvisation with Favourite Tales
by Ruth Beall Heinig
Gives teachers practical methods of dramatising literature. Using nineteen
traditional tales as a springboard for exploration, the author explains
some basic drama exercises and methods of teaching, and then presents
hundreds of drama activities based on the tales. The activities frequently
extend beyond the basic storyline to create opportunities for exploring
characters, plots and themes. The activities for each tale are grouped
into categories of pantomime and verbal modes, and then are further grouped
according to solo or paired and group playing. Softcover, $23.95.
Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre
by Keith Johnstone
Divided into four sections, "Status," "Spontaneity," "Narrative
Skills," and "Masks and Trance" ¹ arranged more or less in the order
a group might approach them, the book lays out the specific techniques and exercises
which Johnstone himself has found most useful and most stimulating. The book is a
combination of examples from his work with the Royal Court Theatre and suggestions
for classroom use ¹ thus, the theoretical is mingled with the practical in this unique
resource for acting teachers and/or theatre directors. Softcover, $34.99.
Impro for Storytellers
by Keith Johnstone
This book builds on the seminal work of Johnstone's Impro. His techniques specialize in releasing an individual's potential within the context of group work. The book includes detailed sections on Theatresports, as well as various aspects of Impro from Audience Suggestions to the exploration of Spontaneity. The bulk of the book deals with the subject of storytelling, which takes the techniques of Impro beyond the endless repetition of games; this section is filled with helpful theoretical hints as well as games and activities. Softcover. $22.00.
Improve with Improv! A Guide to Improvisation and Character Development
by Brie Jones
A complete improv curriculum program divided into 20 workshops.
The activities presented have been used by the author to stimulate
acting students in a community college
class, but may be adapted for any and all age groups. Each workshop
includes introductory lecture notes, a few demonstrations, and
a series of improv exercises. Workshop titles
include Orientation, Ensemble, Vocal Techniques, Props, Gibberish,
Animals, and Commedia dell'Arte, among others. Softcover, $16.95.
Improvisations in Creative Drama
by Betty Keller
The first section of the book is composed of an ordered sequence
of workshops in creative drama, each explained in detail as it has
been used by the author with her
students. The workshops, which are meant as departure points, will
provide enough material for a years work in the classroom. They are
recommended as an introduction
to the fundamentals of sound and music, poetry and imagination, and
play-acting on stage. The second part of the book is a collection
of fourteen short plays for practice
and performance. Softcover, $15.95.
Let's Improvise: Becoming Creative, Expressive
& Spontaneous Through Drama, Third Edition
by Milton E. Polsky
The first four chapters explore non-verbal techniques and exercises designed
to make students move, think and create. The next two chapters deal
with contrasting varieties of pantomime, while the final sections of
the book look at verbal improvisations. Each chapter is filled with
expressive games and activities which may be used to develop a year-long
course in improv. To foster personal awareness, the book features "Add
Your Own" spaces in which players can contribute their original
ideas and images. A "Player's Diary" at the end of each chapter
is designed to further enhance self-discovery. Softcover, $24.95.
Improvisation for the Theatre, Third Edition
by Viola Spolin
Spolin's improvisational techniques, designed to enable the player or actor to enter
into ongoing stage reality in a process that allows artistic and intuitive freedom
to grow, have changed the very nature and practice of modern theatre. The third edition
of this book updates the more than two-hundred exercises and adds 30 new ones. It
also adds 30 traditional theatre games that are frequently used as warm-ups, and
includes Spolin's explanations of key concepts crucial to her program. Further, there
is a section on "The Lone Actor," which offers games for individuals to
play when they are alone.
Large-format softcover, $28.95.
Also by Viola Spolin:
- Theatre Game File - $88.00
- Theatre Games For Rehearsal - $25.00
- Theatre Games For The Classroom - $31.50
- Theatre Games For The Lone Actor - $20.50
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