Twyla Tharp “The Creative Habit”


Twyla Tharp “The Creative Habit”

Creativity is a habit. And the most outstanding creators are created by the habit of working hard and hard.

Creativity is not only a lot of “artistic natures”. It is available to business people looking for new ways to increase sales; engineers solving a technical problem; parents who want their children to see the world from different angles.

Who is this book for?

For people who have not yet figured out how to deal with procrastination and creative crisis. The author of the book, Twyla Tharp, is a dancer and choreographer, but in her book she focuses on a wide audience of creative people: artists, writers, musicians, directors. It doesn’t matter what kind of art your creativity belongs to if you don’t know how to avoid creative stagnation – this book is definitely for you.


What is this book about?

This book is primarily about skill development. To get creative, you need to know how to prepare yourself for it. When creativity becomes a significant part of a person’s life, when clients and customers appear, it becomes necessary to work regularly, and not on the call of inspiration. How do you stay productive?

Talent or Labor?

The answer is hidden in the title of the book. You need to develop the habit of creating. Any creative person will confirm that colossal work is behind the seeming ease. One of the central characters of the book, to whom the author now and then turns, is Mozart. In films and books, the great composer is presented as a frivolous musician of genius. But this is not entirely true. It is known that due to persistent studies, concerts, recording notes by the age of 28, his fingers were deformed. So what is creativity? God’s gift or the result of overwork? Twyla Tharp does not recognize the leading role of the gift of the Almighty, she is sure that no matter how capable a person is by nature, he cannot become a genius without difficulty.


How to finally start?

One of the most important steps in the beginning of the creative process is preparation. The first steps are the hardest, no matter how much we love our business. Therefore, it is necessary to start a ritual. Some kind of pleasant and familiar activity that will help you get involved. The ritual does not imply “like it or not like it,” it just starts the process. Twyla Tharp herself always takes a taxi to the gym in the early morning. When she tells the taxi driver where to go, she no longer has a choice, she just goes to practice and the process is started. The book contains many more interesting and funny rituals of her acquaintances: businessmen, artists, choreographers.

The ritual, of course, helps to overcome creative laziness, but mainly it helps to close our eyes to their fears. And especially the main fear is the fear of starting. A blank sheet, an empty room, an untouched canvas – all of this acts disarmingly. But the ritual will help develop a reflex. And then – everything according to Pavlov: we follow the chosen procedure and get the result in the form of creativity.

Ritual is not the only element of the creative process. After all, the introduction is followed by the main part, no less complicated. In addition to many pages of theoretical reasoning, the author places in the book various exercises that will help you look at the creative process from a different angle. They will help you analyze and optimize your work.


Inspirational stories

Twyla Tharp mentions a well-known truth in her book: you don’t need ideal conditions for creativity. And he gives two great examples from his own career. Once she was invited to stage a ballet at the New York City Ballet. The artistic director put unlimited resources in Twyla’s hands: a lot of time, money, a symphony orchestra and the best dancers. But without restrictions, she was unable to make a brilliant production. This ballet did not become either her favorite or the best in her career. And after a month and a half, Twyla took on another project, where she was provided with terrible conditions: two weeks for rehearsals, a minimum budget and dancers employed in other productions. But these unfavorable conditions became an advantage. Two weeks later, Twila Tharp staged the best ballet in her career.


There is a lot of text in this beautiful book, this is not a brochure for one evening. It contains many interesting details from the creative biographies of great people – Stravinsky, Mozart, Leonardo da Vinci, Picasso, Dostoevsky and many others. Here are examples from the life of “ordinary” creative people who are not famous all over the world. Real stories of their ups and downs.

If you want to make creativity your work – dare and do not succumb to laziness and crisis. And the author’s many years of experience will help you on your own winding creative path.

Buy the book “The habit of creativity”

Twyla Type’s book “The Habit of Creativity” is available for purchase in the online stores or Labyrinth in paper form at a price of 730 rubles or in electronic form for 400 rubles.

Author: Evgeniya Suvorova

Leave a Reply