Sunday, February 18, 2018


Playback Theater and Improv:

Jo SalasPlayback Theater
Jo Salas is a New Zealand-born writer living in the Mid-Hudson Valley of New York. She is the co-founder, with her husband Jonathan Fox, of Playback Theatre (www.playbacktheatre.org), an original form of interactive theatre in which personal stories are told by audience members and enacted on the spot. Her first book, Improvising Real Life: Personal Story in Playback Theatre, grew out of the desire to support the increasing numbers of people who wanted to learn and use Playback Theatre. Accessible, thoughtful, and full of stories, the book describes Playback Theatre's origins and practices. It's been reprinted several times since 1993, and translations have been published in Germany, Japan, Brazil, Uruguay, Taiwan, Russia, and Israel.

Nick RowePlaying the Other: Dramatizing Personal Narratives in Playback Theatre
This book is an exploration and critique of 'playback theatre', a form of improvised theatre in which a company of performers spontaneously enact autobiographical stories told to them by members of the audience. With more than ten years' experience as an actor with Playback Theatre York, the author introduces the reader to the basics of playback theatre within a historical and theoretical context. The history and development of the form is traced, from its conception in the late 1970s to its subsequent growth worldwide, and its relationship to the psychodrama tradition from which it has evolved is discussed. Through an examination of playback performances from the perspectives of performers, 'tellers' of their stories and the audience, the author critically explores the nature, implications and ethics of the performers' response to the teller's experience, how notions of the public and personal are constructed, and the risks involved in improvising a response to a member of the audience's story. "Playing the Other" will be essential reading for drama students, dramatherapists and all those interested in the history and use of the theatre.

Milton E. PolskyLet's Improvise: Becoming Creative, Expressive and Spontaneous Through Drama
Beginning with simple sensory-awareness exercises in a relaxed atmosphere, and moving through pantomime and role playing to longer skits, Let's Improvise emphasises self-discovery through doing. Through hundreds of exercises that encourage personal and social growth you will feel free to create to transform an ordinary idea into a celebration of life: to "try on" a variety of characters from life and literature: to take creative risks; to test and revise your thoughts, feelings, and values: to lose your inhibitions and build confidence and cooperation through teamwork and much more.

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