Dramatherapy is one of the creative arts therapy modalities (along with music-, art- and dance-movement therapy). It fruitfully connects the inherent healing roots of theatre and the methods and techniques of modern psycho- and social therapies. As an action-oriented and present-related form of therapy, dramatherapy focuses on creative processes enabling access to previously hidden resources. Dramatherapy utilizes stories, myths, movement, plays, scripts, puppetry, masks or improvised scenes as a therapeutic medium. Role-playing as well as interacting in a variety of scenarios within the dramatic reality opens up access to creative potential and gives new insights and perspectives to be tested and integrated into one’s own life outside of therapy.
Dramatherapy was developed primarily in England, the United States as well as the Netherlands in the second half of the last century. Todaz it is an officially recognized form of therapy in many countries around the world. In its present form it has been offered within the German health care system for the last 25 years. Dramatherapy takes place primarily in group or community settings but can also be offered as individual therapy. Previous experience in theater or the arts are explicitly not required to participate in drama therapy.
As to training, the Institute für Theatertherapie (ITT) has been offering advanced training and continuing education in dramatherapy on behalf of the DGfT for several years. In addition the Nürtingen-Geislingen University, and from Autumn 2023 the MSH Medical School Hamburg offer an undergraduate degree in drama therapy.
The diverse fields of work of drama therapy can be found here.