The Improv Illusionist Book

The Improv Illusionist by David Raitt - Book Cover

Be more physical with your improv with The Improv Illusionist book!

Look Inside! Buy from Bloomsbury.com

Get it in print or ebook direct from the publisher above. You can also find it on Amazon or anywhere theatre books are sold.

“This is the book I wish I had when I was starting at Second City.”
— Geri Hall, actor
(This Hour Has 22 Minutes, Astrid and Lilly Save the World)

“It’s a wonderful workbook to guide a long-term practice. The exercises are explained with such eloquence that, while you read them, you feel like starting to play and working.”
— Pamela Iturra, Improlectora
(Status Magazine review, published September 2023)
Read the full review here

“I appreciate your writing style, thoroughness, and organization; the exercises and ideas are all well-described and helpful. Honestly this is the book I’ve been needing right now in my improv learning, as I feel like I’ve gotten away from my object work (and my team has a really bad habit of forgetting it) and your ideas are helping me re-center the imaginative aspects of improv. Thank you for the ways you’re making my/our improv learning better!”
— Tim K., Valparaiso, IN, USA

“I started improvisation 2 years ago. I found your book while looking to learn more about physicality in improv. It exceeded my expectations and I look forward to practice and explore more about it! I also found what I love about improvisation: kindness and respect for others, simplicity, curiosity, humour and emotions.”
— Matis E., Lyon, France

Object work, environment and physicality are essential for improvisational theatre. Skilled improvisers can draw audiences into the performance by helping them see things that aren’t there.

The Improv Illusionist is the first book dedicated to physical improv. It reveals why these skills are so important, how to fix bad habits that develop over time, and practical techniques for being more physical on stage.

Get better at physical improv

The book features over 50 exercises to help improvisers develop their skills through solo and group work. Instructors will also find notes and tips for teaching physical improv.

Improvisers of all ages and experience levels will learn how to:

* become more playful through exploring physical activity;
* eliminate miscommunication with other players by adding precision to object work;
* get new ideas for scenes by exploring the environment and activities;
* develop an eye for real-world detail and how to reproduce it in improv;
* add more visual flair to scenes;
* stay safe, both physically and emotionally, in shows, rehearsals and classes

Even the most seasoned improv performers often struggle to be more physical. So this book fills an important niche in improv actor training.

Not ready to buy just yet? Check out “Learning the Improv Illusion”, my free email series introducing Physical Improv. It can help you decide if you want to go deeper into the topics covered in the book.

About the Author

David Raitt - Performance Photo

David Raitt has been performing and teaching improv for over 25 years. After acquiring degrees in Cognitive Science and then Law, he started taking improv classes at The Second City, Toronto, in 1996. In 2000, he joined their Canadian National Touring Company. He performed with the Mainstage ensemble and was also on the Training Centre Education faculty for 17 years. He offers speciality workshops in object work, environment and physicality.

Learning the Improv Illusion

A free series introducing the techniques of Physical Improv.