Usually we would talk and write and think about improvisation as a non-sustainable thing. We would praise the fact that is live and living, that is happening in the moment and then it vanishes, it disappears. The fact that it is non-repeatable makes it precious, sometimes even because it also includes grief and the strong realisation of transience. We would say oh what a pity it is that nothing stays in our hands afterwards, no sustainable product, noone else except the people that were there can experience it, read it, see it, join it, grab it, cocreate it, feel it, travel with it. We would comfort ourselves saying that improvisation offers something else, that exactly because of this eternal lack and pain, it raises the preciousness of the moment. For sure there are many good points and playgrounds in setting the relation between improvisation and sustainability like this – the constant dying, passing by, disappearing and on the other hand the liveliness of the moment and of life itself are sticking out even more.
But we can also play with it in another way. What if we say that exactly improvisation is what is really sustainable, or better that improvisation is sustainability. First, it is not faking that things, events, lives can be repeated. Second, it is not hiding the always present transience. Third, and the most connected to the hypothesis (or the playground we are momentarily enjoying) of improvisation being sustainability, it is enliving the moment, helping the moment to vibrate and shine, uncovering whatever the moment consists of or, as Norbert would say, it is transforming moments into events. Improvisation is working with what there is and in order to do so it is primarily recognizing what there is. It is admitting the randomness of life and at the same time it is acknowledging details, relations, happenings in the concrete space and time we happen to find ourselves in and creating connections among them, intertwining them into possible worlds. It is not bringing an already existing product from another space and time to insert it in our lives or to ignore what is here right now. It is uncovering and playing with what is already among us, acknowledging the ground we stand on and opening doors to everything we can grow from it. It is enliving the moments, calling out loud that they exist and by doing this improvisation is leaving endless traces, it is touching and cocreating our transient lives and lives yet to come.