For big laughs, comedy relies on exaggeration, incongruity, automatism, character inconsistency, surprise and derision. Now, a book that defines and demonstrates each of these devices with twenty-two short sketches and one-act plays. This unique overview of high and low comedy defines all comedy genres: absurdism, tragicomedy, farce and melodrama. A discussion precedes each type of comedy illustrated, explaining the comic devices used. The reader will find many insights along the way about how to write and perform each comedy style successfully. The wide variety of scripted drama material included makes the book very user-friendly for teaching, acting practice and live presentations. All characterizations are appropriate for student actors in their teens or twenties. Sample sketches include: Bardic Blackouts, Users, Father Knows Better, in the Appelations, The Monolog.