A story about this — 6 years ago
I read this because I plan to take an improv comedy class in a few weeks. A few good parts: "The truth is funny. … Honest discovery, observation, and reaction is better than contrived invention. … And when we’re simply opening ourselves up to each other and being honest, we’re usually the funniest.
“Giving up control may be disastrous for a stand-up comic, but an improviser has to put his trusts into the hands of the ensemble. … A truly funny scene is not the result of someone trying to steal laughs at the expense of his partner, but of generosity — f trying to make the other person (and his ideas) look as good as possible.
Ch. 2: “The most direct path to disaster in improvisation is trying to make jokes. … Chances are you’re concentrating on telling a joke, you’re not looking for connections in a scene.” Telling a joke “sucks the energy out of a scene.” “When a player forces a joke, it is usually a comment about the scene. Unfortunately, if you are able to comment on the scene, then you are not really involved in the scene.”