Truth in Comedy : Manual of Improvisation, Paperback

Truth in Comedy : Manual of Improvisation Paperback

4 out of 5 (1 rating)


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 150 pages, illus
  • Publisher: Christian Publishers LLC
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Theatre studies
  • ISBN: 9781566080033



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This book lays out the various improv concepts of Second City and ImprovOlympic (IO Theater) and describes the synthesis of the long form format "the Harold". It lays out the principal concepts of improv scene work and lays the stage for concepts to build on top of one another for comedic performance. There is a good amount of praise for the author's teachings from various Hollywood comics including SNL cast members Mike Myers, Chris Farley and Tina Fey. The book being 15 years old means some of the anecdotes are a bit dated, but the principles laid out remain staples of improv teachings to this day. There is also a good deal of discussion of improv guru / legend / zen master Del Close. For those who do not know the name, he is a legend Chicago improv, and by extension, the UCB, who branched out to NYC and LA. While many people don't know him, they know many of his students. The book (not unlike this review) lacks a bit of focus, but (unlike this review) is enjoyable to read. It's got a good pace and I learned a lot reading it. I'll definitely go back to this often.

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