from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Made up without preparation; improvised.
  • adj. Of or relating to improvisation: improvisatory skill.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Of, pertaining to, or in the nature of improvisation

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Same as improvisatorial.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Mr. Bieito, by contrast, "erred on the side of the improvisatory, which is so much fun."

    Calixto Bieito's Second Act

  • Whitbourn's interest in the compelling combination of voices and the soprano saxophone dominates here, his 2001 Son of God Mass using the instrument in improvisatory, spiritual mode to link the sections of the mass and overlay a lithe counterpoint to the choir.

    James Whitbourn: Living Voices and other choral works – review

  • She wowed him with her improvisatory mix of hip-hop, ballet and Bollywood-inspired movements.

    A 5-Borough Dance Floor

  • Hussain and his two compatriots offered an impressive level of virtuosity - the tabla employing a rich vocabulary of sounds and intricate, continually nuanced rhythms; the singers embarking on long improvisatory half-chants, their bodies cupped around a sound that they seemed to be bringing forth with conductor-like gestures of the hands.

    NSO review: Tabla meets West as 'India' concert strikes a crossover convergence

  • Recent recordings capture both his improvisatory sessions with the elder Riley—whose oscillating keyboard patterns famously inspired the Who —and his compositions for solo guitar, featured on the Tzadik release "Streams of Gratitude."

    A Minimalist Heir With Maximum Chops

  • If ensemble unity was pushed to its limits, conductor Harry Bicket made sure the improvisatory verve didn't undermine cohesion.

    English Concert at Library of Congress

  • His recent return to the instrument pursues a different path, though, combining the open, improvisatory style of jazz musicians Don Cherry and Bill Dixon (who innovated a whole catalog of extended techniques for the instrument in the 1960s) and the Brian Eno collaborator Jon Hassell.

    Rhys Chatham Brings the Noise

  • Audiences looking to get their flamenco puro , as pure and traditional as possible — in the form of an intense, improvisatory, and mostly solo art of music, song and dance — won't find their expectations met here.

    A Broad View of Flamenco

  • Originally assembled in 1986 after trumpeter Frank London placed an ad in the Village Voice, the Klezmatics eventually revitalized the Jewish music tradition with a hip New York attitude that was gay positive singer Lorin Sklamberg is gay, improvisatory, and open to other styles of music.

    Quarter-Life Crisis for the Klezmatics

  • When I lived near there a few years ago, the corner was like a souvenir of West Berlin's improvisatory spirit, and I could imagine it extending into some indefinite future, with its slightly scruffy, but unmistakable vitality intact.

    Kreuzberg Bellyaches Over Kebab Tourism


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  • Nice mouth feel, kind of sounds like what it means -- not so easy to say, not so easy to do in life

    February 21, 2007