Improv Quote of the Day: Invitations to Learn


(Photo credit: acornchief)

Children learn to talk by experimenting and listening; they can learn to make music by experimenting and listening–unless we stop them! Place children in surroundings that are full of “invitations to learn,” provide them with encouraging and sympathetic attitudes from adults, as well as knowledge, and amazing things can happen–especially to the sensory perceptions that are central to the arts… Do we have the courage to embark with them on what are frequently unknown seas?

–Emma Sheehy



Improv Game of the Day: A Giant Pineapple!

1 player and an audience (e.g. of Second Graders).

John Manning teaches tuba and euphonium all day long at The University of Iowa School of Music, but after hours he has a remarkable creative side that manifests itself in various ways, one of which is bringing his tuba to his daughter’s second grade classroom. In this game John asks each child in turn for a suggestion for something that he will then depict in music on the tuba. The creativity of children this age is still unbridled; the educational system has not yet squelched the joyous creativity spontaneity of the child at this age, and they are still immune to worrying about appearing “cool” to classmates (making primary schools a terrific place to bring musical improvisation). So John hears wonderful combinations of words and images and never knows what to expect: “A million gophers!”; “Purple cheese!”; “A big bug!”; “My dog!”; “Sand!”; “A red truck!”; and so on. Try this yourself the nearest class of 2nd graders – but be ready for anything!