The Jazz Theologian

The Jazz Theologian

Improvisation (part 2)

Malcolm Gladwell, author of Blink, tells of a time when he attended a show for an improv comedy group. “They would get up onstage, without any idea whatsoever of what character they would be playing or what plot they would be acting out, take a random suggestion from the audience, and then, without so much as a moment’s consultation, make up a thirty minute play form scratch.”

Improv seems to be 100% off the cuff but it is not. “…the true is that improve isn’t random and chaotic at all…Every week they get together for a lengthy rehearsal. After each show they gather backstage and critique each other’s performance soberly. Why do they practice so much? Because improve is an art from governed by a series of rules, and they want to make sure that when they’re up on stage, everyone abides by those rules.”


“This is the critical lesson of improv…spontaneity isn’t random.”

Gladwell concludes that improve works only when the hard work is done to create “the conditions for successful spontaneity.”[i]

How does this inform how we do ministry? We all want to be free, but are we willing to put in the practice in order for it to happen? What are the "conditions for successful spontaneity" when it comes to doing ministry together?

[i] Gladwell, Malcolm, “Blink: The power of Thinking Without Thinking,” (Little,Brown; New York: 2005), pp111-117

Comments Post the First Comment »
post a comment

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to and may be used by in accordance with the agreements.

Previous Posts

More Blogs To Enjoy!!!
Thank you for visiting The Jazz Theologian page. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here are some other blogs you may also enjoy: Red Letters with Tom Davis Recent prayer post on Prayables Most Recent ...

posted 9:08:40am Feb. 14, 2012 | read full post »

Celebrating National Adoption Month
November is National Adoption Month.  God is up to something.  The Bride of Christ is waking up all across this nation to the need to care for orphans through adoption and foster care. James 1.27 makes it clear that to be Christian is to ...

posted 1:42:26pm Nov. 11, 2011 | read full post »

Sermon of the Week: Your Lot in Life (P6)
This book just keeps getting better! [vimeo][/vimeo] ...

posted 3:00:02pm Nov. 05, 2011 | read full post »

Guest Blogger: Patricia Raybon
A Ghost? Or Our God?   By Patricia Raybon It’s dark, cold and early. But I’m excited. On this morning, the most important thing I have to do is hear from God. And not just a little bit. I want to hear without limits. Isn’t that what ...

posted 6:00:00am Oct. 31, 2011 | read full post »

Sermon of the Week: Your Lot in Life (P5)
Good News:  Pure Motives Are Not Required Before We Serve In The Kingdom of God! [vimeo][/vimeo] ...

posted 3:56:39pm Oct. 28, 2011 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.