Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre

Front Cover
A&C Black, Jun 29, 2007 - Drama - 208 pages
74 Reviews

"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

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
2 stars
1 star

Review: Impro

User Review  - Karen Chung - Goodreads

Reposting my July 18, 2010 Amazon review of this book: Delving deep into the human psyche Beyond being the most important work on improvisation I know of, this book is wonderful just for the many ... Read full review

Review: Impro

User Review  - Erik Johannessen - Goodreads

Given my utter lack of any background in theater or improvisation, it's fair to say that I would never have picked up Impro without some strong recommendations from people whose opinions I value ... Read full review

Other editions - View all

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.

Bibliographic information