Long Form Improv—Celebration of the Form



While many more individuals are familiar with short form due to the popularity of the televised Whose Line Is It Anyway? and a large portion of the population is familiar with the sketch comedy format often used by venues like The Second City and Saturday Night Live, long form has remained the more elusive form of the three branches of performance improv. When trying to describe long form to an audience member unfamiliar with the term, experienced improvisers find themselves boiling down this hybrid art form. Improviser Nancy Hayden, who has worked at Second City in both Chicago and Detroit and is a founding member of Detroit’s Planet Ant Improv Colony explains it this way: “If I couldn’t use any improv terms to describe long form, just pulling from their [the general public’s] reference level and what I think they’d know, I’d probably say that it’s a play that we improvise. It’s like a short little play; a 30-minute play that we improvise” (personal interview).


Short Form Personal Interview Form Game Word Association Audience Member 
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© Jeanne Leep 2008

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