Bringing people together through ‘play’ 
Improvisational theater as a tool to develop group dynamics and enhance thinking outside the box Improvisational theater based on the work of Keith Johnstone* has a clear set of rules, which make it accessible to non-theater groups. These rules are:  
Be Positive: Playing improv games involves creating short scenes. The rule is quite simple “begin the scene in a positive way”. This sounds a lot easier then it is because people tend to react negatively when they are not sure what comes next. When the future is unclear it is very natural to react negatively and take distance. This is counterproductive when trying to create something out of nothing, which is in essence what improvisation is all about.  
Accept All Ideas: Creating as you go along can be difficult if players are constantly asking themselves “is this the right thing to do?” Placing the acceptation rule in the game helps the fear of failure trap. The ‘accept all ideas’ rule enables players to relax and tap into their creativity.  
Make offers: Accepting all ideas is a good start, but it is half the work. Once the idea has been accepted the receiver is expected to add something to help develop the idea. Improvisational theater is all about teamwork.  
Putting all the rules together: Accept offers, add your own ideas along the way, and when possible put those ideas into motion. Don’t block, support your fellow player, relax, dare to enjoy the ride of not knowing what is about to happen.  
When these rules are applied stories can take off and develop instantaneously. Some improvisations can be so smooth, interesting and entertaining that audiences sometimes find it hard to believe that it was created on the spot.  
*Keith Johnstone is a British and Canadian pioneer of improvisational theater, best known for inventing the Impro System, part of which are the Theatersports. He is also an educator, playwright, and theatre director.