What is Dramatherapy?

Dramatherapy can help with issues such as

  • attachment
  • behavioural problems
  • depression
  • school difficulties
  • confidence issues
  • overcoming trauma
  • family breakup
  • peer problems
  • identity issues
  • eating and food-related problems


What does Dramatherapy look like in practice?

A dramatherapy session will generally include the dramatherapist encouraging you to talk about your problems, life experiences and difficulties. The dramatherapist will offer you a dramatic or creative intervention from which to explore this. The client may choose to explore with a direct life drama connection or to use more metaphorical exploration. Dramatherapy holds, engages and explores this process supporting you to rehearse, find resolution in relation to the initial presenting difficulties and to support change.

Dramatherapy interventions include working with symbols and metaphor, movement, play, storytelling, mask work, puppet work, character development, dramatic enactment, improvisation. Clients who are referred to a Dramatherapist do not need to have previous experience or skill in acting, theatre or drama.

Clients learn to develop an awareness of self, creativity, confidence, anxiety and stress relief, relational awareness, increased focus and a capacity for emotional growth and lasting change.

As with psychotherapy, the underlying aim of dramatherapy is to help you develop a sense of mastery and control over the problem situation.

British Association of Dramatherapists – click here to visit the website

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‘Stevie played with the dinosaurs in the sand and I made gentle enquires about their world. ‘How long had the dinosaurs been there? What was in the landscape? What was their day like?’ Stevie told me that there was nothing in their land; there wasn’t any food or water so the dinosaurs were often hungry and this made them really cross and they fought each other all the time. He also told me that a big volcano was going to erupt and that all the dinosaurs were going to get hurt by the lava, he said that he didn’t want the little dinosaurs to get hurt but the big dinosaurs were too busy fighting to help.’

 A description of moving into metaphorical engagement

 Stevie and the Little Dinosaur. A Story of Assessment In Dramatherapy Chapter 23 pp235 by Sarah Mann Shaw – In The International Handbook of Dramatherapy Ed Jennings and Holmewood Routledge 2016