The Book

‘Improvisation: The Guide published 2006’ is the third edition of ‘Theatresports Down Under’. First published in 1993 and again in 1995, it is an improvisation coaching manual for both players and teachers.

Now 460 pages of warm up games, scene work and performance games for improvisors 8–80 years, it is a bible for all teachers, actors and improvisors.

It is a practical, detailed, hands-on feast of ideas, exercises and scene work.

Drama teachers at secondary, primary and tertiary levels have found it invaluable.
The techniques have been used for corporate workshops, drama in education and professional actor training.

It is the only book since Viola Spolin’s, ‘Improvisation For The Theater’ to describe improvisation teaching exercises and games in depth. This book tells you in simple language how to begin, what to do next and offers suggestions on how to take the work further.

Chapter One ‘Improvisation’ outlines the history of Improvisation and its boom years in the 1980s in Australia. It describes the unique Australian Theatresports® rituals and how these came to be. The Theatresports® Anthem, the Ten Commandments, the timekeeper, topics and titles all unique to the Australian Theatresports® cultural expression are different to Theatresports® as it is played in other countries.

Other sections of the book covers the improvisation vocabulary, ‘Terms and skills’ and description of the ‘Process’ in action. Then comes the bulk of this tome..

The Seven Programs:

Making an offer
Finding the focus
Advancing and extending the narrative
Making a transition
Developing a character


Each program is divided into Foundation skills, Scene work exercises and Performance Games.

These are the games and scene work in detail. Here the work scaffolds from the warmup and foundation exercises to the performance games.
Teachers can build their own lesson plans or use those suggested.

In section four, the ‘Warmup games’ and ‘Voice Warmup’ chapters offer sensible choices for a safe and thorough physical and vocal group/team warmup.

The Appendix gives over 250 scene starts and titles.

All up, this is 400 pages of over 250 games and exercises written as an improvisation syllabus in clear, what to do stages. It outlines the learning indicators, scaffolds the exercises to the performance games, discusses the expected learning outcomes.

With photos, amusing anecdotes, diary entries and more, this is the true teachers’ improvisation bible.

Kids love this book so much, one teenager described it as ‘the most stolen book in the school library.’

The book is endorsed by Nicole Kidman, Geoffrey Rush, Georgie Parker, Gia Carides, Glynn Nicolas, Andrew Denton, John Clark (AM), Judy Cater and Andrew O’Keefe who each give their opinion of impro, the book and its writer.

“Lyn Pierse’s book should be on the shelf of every director and every teacher looking for new ways to inspire dynamic acting.” John Clark (AM).

Published by Improcorp Australia & ish Group, Sydney Australia

Distributor: ish Group, Sydney Australia