Tag Archive | ritual

Improvisation and Trance: an Experiment

Recently, while at the Applied Improv conference in San Francisco, a Dutch colleague approached me to collaborate on creating a workshop that was focused on bringing the participants towards a state of trance. She had some knowledge of neo-shamanism from reading and participating in some European personal growth workshops, and she wanted to collaborate with […]

The Human Brain on Improvised Theater

Here is the text of a 5-minute speech I gave at Ignite Portland 10: After performing and teaching improvised theater for years, I noticed two things. 1) in the best of performances, many of us would have this incredible feeling of ‘unity of thought and action’ as a side effect during the show, a sort of […]

Inspiring Words

I’m in the middle of doing research for another book in the works, and I came across this from Brian Sutton-Smith in his book The Ambiguity of Play: However, modern chance games and modern festivals have fallen away from religion and become secularized. Yet one can see that, along with all forms of play, they […]

Elements of Ritual and Communion in Improvised Theatre

Introduction Whose Line Is It Anyway?, The Upright Citizen’s Brigade, Saturday Night Live, and a host of other modern popular comedic fare all draw roots from the North American tradition of improvisational theater as developed largely in Chicago, Illinois and Calgary, Canada. This brand of performance creates scenes, stories, characters, themes, dialogue and staging spontaneously […]

Improvisation: the Original Survival Tool

When it came down to it, mother nature laid the smackdown on early Homo Sapiens. We arrive in the archeological record about 200,000 years ago. About 90,000 years ago, Africa’s climate became extremely arid in a very short time leading to a resource crisis. No food and no water means no surviving for many of […]