Guide to the Patricia Ryan Madson Papers SC1496

Presley Hubschmitt
Department of Special Collections and University Archives
September 2019
Green Library
557 Escondido Mall
Stanford 94305-6064

Language of Material: English
Contributing Institution: Department of Special Collections and University Archives
Title: Patricia Ryan Madson papers
source: Madson, Patricia Ryan
creator: Madson, Patricia Ryan
Identifier/Call Number: SC1496
Physical Description: 2.5 Linear Feet (2 half boxes & 1 flat box)
Date (inclusive): circa 1987-2007
Physical Location: Special Collections and University Archives materials are stored offsite and must be paged 48 hours in advance. For more information on paging collections, see the department's website:

Conditions Governing Use

All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from, or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections and University Archives, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, California 94304-6064. Consent is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission from the copyright owner. Such permission must be obtained from the copyright owner, heir(s) or assigns. Restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.

Preferred Citation

[identification of item], Patricia Ryan Madson papers (SC1496). Department of Special Collections and University Archives, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, Calif.

Conditions Governing Access

Materials are open for research use. Audio-visual materials are not available in original format, and must be reformatted to a digital use copy.

Scope and Contents

The collection primarily consists of ephemera from Stanford events including, Founder's Day, the Cornerstone Dedication, and the Cantor Museum of the Arts Opening Gala. It also includes some photos, VHS tapes, and notes from various performances and speeches. Includes copies of letters written by Leland and Jane Stanford that were used in performances.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift, 2019.

Biographical / Historical

Patricia Ryan Madson is the author of IMPROV WISDOM: DON’T PREPARE, JUST SHOW UP (Random House, 2005) and a professor Emerita from Stanford University where she taught from 1977-2005. In the Drama Department she served as the head of the undergraduate acting program and developed the improvisation program. In 1998 she was the winner of the Lloyd W. Dinkelspiel Award for Outstanding Innovation in Undergraduate Education at Stanford. She founded and coached the Stanford Improvisors and taught beginning and advanced level courses in Improvisation for undergraduate as well as adults in Stanford's Continuing Studies Program. In 1996 she founded the Creativity Initiative at Stanford, an interdisciplinary alliance of faculty who share the belief that creativity can be taught. Patricia has taught Design Improv for the School of Engineering, and was a guest lecturer for the Stanford Technology Ventures Program and for the Mayfield Fellows program. (Excerpt from

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Improvisation (Acting)
Performing arts.
Madson, Patricia Ryan
Madson, Patricia Ryan
Stanford University. Department of Theater and Performance Studies -- Faculty
Stanford Improvisers (SImps)


Papers Accession ARCH-2019-214


Performances and Celebrations

Box 1, Folder 1

List of Jane Stanford Performances 1987-2007

Box 1, Folder 2

Commencement photographs and programs from Stanford events

Box 1, Folder 3

Materials from Stanford Cornerstone Dedication, Community Day, and Cantor Museum of Arts Opening Gala

Box 1, Folder 4

Speeches and performance materials from various Stanford events

Box 3

Scrapbook, includes photographs, notes, and cards for Patricia


Audiovisual Materials

Box 2

The Arts at Stanford - SIMPS '97 2_01 1997 Jun

Physical Description: 1 videotape(s) (vhs)
Box 2

The Arts at Stanford - Stanford Improvisers in Theatresports 2_02 1006 Jun 1

Physical Description: 1 videotape(s) (vhs)
Box 2

Jane Stanford by Patricia Ryan - Edit Master 2_03 1987 May 12

Physical Description: 1 videotape(s) (vhs)
Box 2

Jane Stanford - Rehearsal - Master Tape 2_04 1987 May 12

Physical Description: 1 videotape(s) (vhs)