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Improv Wisdom: Don't Prepare, Just Show Up
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Published:
Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale 2010
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Checked Out
Description
In an irresistible invitation to lighten up, look around, and live an unscripted life, a master of the art of improvisation explains how to adopt the attitudes and techniques used by generations of musicians and actors. Let’s face it: Life is something we all make up as we go along. No matter how carefully we formulate a “script,” it is bound to change when we interact with people with scripts of their own. Improv Wisdom shows how to apply the maxims of improvisational theater to real-life challenges—whether it’s dealing with a demanding boss, a tired child, or one of life’s never-ending surprises. Patricia Madson distills thirty years of experience into thirteen simple strategies, including “Say Yes,” “Start Anywhere,” “Face the Facts,” and “Make Mistakes, Please,” helping readers to loosen up, think on their feet, and take on everything life has to offer with skill, chutzpah, and a sense of humor.
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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
03/24/2010
Language:
English
ISBN:
9780307531841
ASIN:
B003CIQ4XY
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Citations
APA Citation (style guide)

Patricia Ryan Madson. (2010). Improv Wisdom: Don't Prepare, Just Show Up. Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Patricia Ryan Madson. 2010. Improv Wisdom: Don't Prepare, Just Show Up. Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Patricia Ryan Madson, Improv Wisdom: Don't Prepare, Just Show Up. Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale, 2010.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Patricia Ryan Madson. Improv Wisdom: Don't Prepare, Just Show Up. Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale, 2010. Web.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2010. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.
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10

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Date Updated:
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OverDrive Product Record

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      • value: Leadership
      • value: Improvisation
      • value: Life Skills
      • value: motivation
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creators
      • role: Author
      • fileAs: Madson, Patricia Ryan
      • bioText: Patricia Ryan Madson has been teaching for four decades. On the Stanford drama faculty since 1977, she founded the Stanford Improvisors in 1991. As head of the undergraduate acting program, she won the university's highest teaching prize, the Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel Award for outstanding contribution to undergraduate education. She also teaches at the Esalen Institute and for Stanford's Continuing Studies. Patricia lives with her husband, Ronald Madson, and their Himalayan cat, Buddha, in El Granada, California, where they direct the California Center for Constructive Living.

      • name: Patricia Ryan Madson
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Harmony
publishDate
2010-03-24T00:00:00-04:00
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title
Improv Wisdom
fullDescription
In an irresistible invitation to lighten up, look around, and live an unscripted life, a master of the art of improvisation explains how to adopt the attitudes and techniques used by generations of musicians and actors.
Let’s face it: Life is something we all make up as we go along. No matter how carefully we formulate a “script,” it is bound to change when we interact with people with scripts of their own. Improv Wisdom shows how to apply the maxims of improvisational theater to real-life challenges—whether it’s dealing with a demanding boss, a tired child, or one of life’s never-ending surprises. Patricia Madson distills thirty years of experience into thirteen simple strategies, including “Say Yes,” “Start Anywhere,” “Face the Facts,” and “Make Mistakes, Please,” helping readers to loosen up, think on their feet, and take on everything life has to offer with skill, chutzpah, and a sense of humor.
reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: John Tarrant, author of Bring Me the Rhinoceros
      • content:

        "A marvelous guide to freedom and delight. Improv has become a wisdom tradition of its own and Patricia shows how its lessons can bring out the best in us."

      • premium: False
      • source: Charles Junkerman, Associate Provost and Dean of Continuing Studies, Stanford University
      • content: "Patricia Ryan Madson is one of Stanford's truly inspired teachers; she has changed the lives of thousands of students over the past twenty-eight years. In her smiling book, Improv Wisdom, she reminds us that being alive is like riding a bicycle--we always feel a little off-balance and insecure, but 'in the act of balancing we come alive.' She makes you want to get up and do something--try it out, make mistakes, laugh, play, and try it again."
      • premium: False
      • source: Nina Wise, author of A Big New Free Happy Unusual Life
      • content: "Reading even just a few pages of Patricia Madson's book might change your life forever. That's what has happened to me. These pages are chock-full of wisdom, clarity, and helpful techniques on enhancing spontaneity in everyday life. Read this book--you will be glad and so will everyone else in your life."
      • premium: False
      • source: Philip G. Zimbardo, author of Psychology and Life and Shyness
      • content: "I have witnessed Patricia Madson's magic touch in both her classes and her performances. Her students often describe her as a 'goddess,' but that may be an understatement. I rejoice that her wisdom is now available to new audiences."
      • premium: False
      • source: Norman Fischer, founder and teacher of the Everyday Zen Foundation
      • content: "The premise of Patricia Madson's book is astonishing: to practice the basic rules of improvisational theater is to walk a path toward a spiritually satisfying life. Her underlying claim is simple and sound: if you are willing to be completely present, making full use of whatever happens, you will find goodness in any situation. This is a lucid, wise, and free-spirited book."
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        Starred review from May 2, 2005
        Drama teacher turned self-help advisor Madson learned the hard way that playing by the rules doesn't always mean you win-despite doing all the right things, she was denied tenure in the job of her dreams. The acting teacher learned to jettison the script and improvise her life-and she ended up teaching at a much better university: Stanford. If you improvise, she says, you "will make more mistakes" but you'll also "laugh more often, and have some adventures." Here she offers 13 maxims to guide the fledgling improviser. "Say yes" with the ecstasy of Molly Bloom: it will open up new worlds. "Don't prepare": in focusing on the future, you might miss the present. "Start anywhere": take any entry into a problem, and once you get inside you'll have a better perspective. Madson offers little exercises drawn from improv acting that are easy and eye-opening, such as look at a familiar environment and notice something new in it. Or make a list of important places in your life, put down the book and just go to one of them. Madson's prose radiates the joy of living, the pleasure she has found in taking things as they come. Most self-help books offer a forced sense of inspiration; Madson is genuinely inspiring. "Say yes" to this book.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        May 15, 2005
        Madson, a Stanford University drama teacher and professional improviser, puts a different spin on living the good life. Partly based on Eastern psychology, the art of improvisation, and personal experience, her 13 maxims for saying "yes" to life refreshingly encourage readers to be average, expect insecurity, and make mistakes. Her exercises are easy: thank people for thankless jobs, drive a new way home, and create a new habit. It's a great little book that will get people thinking, and the somewhat unusual title will generate interest and circulation. Recommended for most public libraries.

        Copyright 2005 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

popularity
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shortDescription
In an irresistible invitation to lighten up, look around, and live an unscripted life, a master of the art of improvisation explains how to adopt the attitudes and techniques used by generations of musicians and actors.
Let’s face it: Life is something we all make up as we go along. No matter how carefully we formulate a “script,” it is bound to change when we interact with people with scripts of their own. Improv Wisdom shows how to apply the maxims of improvisational theater to real-life challenges—whether it’s dealing with a demanding boss, a tired child, or one of life’s never-ending surprises. Patricia Madson distills thirty years of experience into thirteen simple strategies, including “Say Yes,” “Start Anywhere,” “Face the Facts,” and “Make Mistakes, Please,” helping readers to loosen up, think on their feet, and take on everything life has to offer with skill, chutzpah,...
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