Drama therapy is primarily conducted in groups, although there are practitioners who use it in individual, couples, or family counseling. Drama therapy can be found in a wide variety of settings, used with many different kinds of clients. Any kind of therapy group that uses talk therapy can use drama therapy.
For some groups, the action methods of drama therapy are more effective. Recovering substance abusers are notorious for being disconnected from their feelings, for making up endless excuses (called rationalizations) for their behavior, and for “being in denial” about their addiction and addictive behaviors. Drama therapy bypasses the excuses and denial, getting right to the behavior. Other types of groups for instance, nonverbal clients or children who aren’t good candidates for verbal therapy can often participate successfully in drama because they can show, rather than verbalize, how they feel.
Drama therapy is practiced in clinical settings, residential settings, correctional facilities, educational situations, corporations and businesses, community action settings, and social and recreational centers. The same techniques might be employed; what changes is the contract or agreement between the clients and therapist to work on a specific goal for particular issues or problems that the clients want to change.
© Copyright Sally D. Bailey, Registered Drama Therapist. All Rights Reserved.