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[im-prov-uh-zey-shuh n, im-pruh-vuh-] /ɪmˌprɒv əˈzeɪ ʃən, ˌɪm prə və-/
the art or act of improvising, or of composing, uttering, executing, or arranging anything without previous preparation:
Musical improvisation involves imagination and creativity.
something improvised:
The actor's improvisation in Act II was both unexpected and amazing.
1780-90; improvise + -ation
Related forms
improvisational, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for improvisational
  • Then progressing to learned music reading slowed down the improvisational but motivating.
  • Between courses, performers interact through improvisational role-playing to a predetermined storyline.
  • Time was too short and the stakes were too high for his usual, more improvisational approach.
  • There is something inspiring about their fluid, improvisational approach.
  • Before that she was a copywriter and improvisational actress.
  • He began performing at an improvisational night spot.
  • Then a phrase was delivered to him straight from improvisational heaven.
  • But precisely because pro wrestling is a roughhouse-ballet form of improvisational comedy, the performers must be fine athletes.
  • Certainly his huge sound, fleet technique and improvisational ingenuity have captured the attention of colleagues.
  • Create and perform theatre pieces as well as improvisational drama.
British Dictionary definitions for improvisational


the act or an instance of improvising
a product of improvising; something improvised
Derived Forms
improvisational, improvisatory (ˌɪmprəˈvaɪzətərɪ; -ˈvɪz-; ˌɪmprəvaɪˈzeɪtərɪ; -trɪ) adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for improvisational

1879; see improvisation + -al (1).



mid-15c., "unforeseen happening;" 1786 as "act of improvising musically," from French improvisation, from improviser "compose or say extemporaneously," from Italian improvvisare, from improvviso "unforeseen, unprepared," from Latin improvisus "not foreseen, unforeseen, unexpected," from assimilated form of in- "not, opposite of" (see in- (1)) + provisus "foreseen," also "provided," past participle of providere "foresee, provide" (see provide).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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