Conference Day is HERE!

The day to kick off #NADTA2016 Conference has arrived!  YAY!  Right now you might already be in Seattle,   getting ready for the amazing  pre-conference start or you might be on your way to join us tomorrow! Regardless of your current status, we are SO excited to spend the next three days sharing and learning as a community!

Our Conference Chairs Jenelle, Kari, and Josiah could not be more excited to see and welcome you! Here is the proof!

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We want to make sure to stay connected throughout the conference via all of our social media platforms! As you engage in this learning  and growing journey for the next few days, make sure to tag your posts so they can be included in the conversation about all things conference!  Here are ways you can do this:

  • Add the hashtag #NADTA2016 to your posts on any social media platform (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc.).
  • Tag us directly on your favorite social media platform!
    • Facebook: North American Drama Therapy Association
    • Instagram: @NADTA.dramatherapy
    • Twitter: @Drama_Therapy
  • Post a comment to the NADTA Facebook page!

We will be re-posting, and sharing your pictures, posts, and updates so everyone can get more and more excited about the great things happening throughout the weekend!

Here are some links for the NADTA, and #NADTA2016 on social media!:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nadtaconference2016
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Drama_Therapy
Instagram: https://instagram.com/nadta.dramatherapy/
Blog: https://nadtaconference.wordpress.com
Web: http://www.nadta.org

See you soon!

Playfully,

Johannys Acevedo
#NADTA2016 Social Media Chair

Presenter Spotlight #5 John Bergman, MA, MT, RDT/BCT and Jessica Litwak, MFA, PhD, RDT

As we get ready for the start of the #NADTA2016 Conference tomorrow, we want to make sure you get more information about our fabulous presenters this year! Today we present to you John Bergman, MA, MT, RDT/BCT and Jessica Litwak, MFA, PhD, RDT. They will be presenting the workshop Ambiguous Praxis: Global Neurobiological Evidence for Story Telling, and Role Play on Sunday. 

What is your presentation/performance/workshop about?  

Perhaps the most important gift of neuroscience has been the fact of neuroplasticity- that the brain is able to create new neural networks for novel experiencing and the future memory of that experiencing. Play internationally, is neither uniform, nor uniformly experienced or taught. Even as simple matter as the increasing resistance in UK to risk taking may be leading to the loss of one of  play’s most crucial goals-independence. Play is intimate, a self- regulator, a neural process (BNF) in its own right. Story telling and role-play are both subsets of play. But if the neural bases are different because the environmental pressures are DIFFERENT can we be sure we all mean the same thing when we say dramatic play.

     NO- and we’ll look at this from neural and cultural perspectives with the help of a few foreign friends of mine who are going to drop in by Skype and help us get clear about this. And ten we’ll improv this to explore it further.

 What are you hoping the community/attendees will learn from it? 

More ways to analyze the “techniques” that now have become drama therapy, rather than my preference, the theatre from which it all came. And to explore how USA drama therapy approaches are romanticized about play for example, and can subtly ignore difference in favor of romanticized , one size fits all work.

  1. What is one thing you want participants to start thinking about in regards to your presentation/performance/workshop?

What is the difference between story telling, role-play and socio-dramatic pretense? And in their experience how, even in the USA, story telling functions are different. Do New Englanders tell stories- how and what? Do Virginians tell stories, how and what and how do those differ? What does this tell us neurally?

  1. Why do you think Creativity is important in the healing of trauma and the processing of emotions?

Not sure if that’s how I would have phrased your question. Contemporary treatment modalities look askance at emotion even though someone like LeDoux or Damasio clearly point to how the neuroscience of experiencing creates /is created by continuous experiencing/sensory emotion/and the feeling of that experiencing. While there is way too much focus in drama therapy on trauma and wild claims of being able to heal it-someone like Fosha and the AEDP process show clearly the need and how to change/turn/create while inside the window of opportunity and before it shuts down. This may mean, for example, rapid changes in phenomenological reality. Creative arts therapists are SOMEWHAT trained to do this. Because someone is a drama therapist does not mean that they are fleet of foot or mind.

  1. How would you describe what Dramatic Play is?

A disengaging process in which physiological action, neural networks including sensorimotor and frontal lobes, language and physical props are used to explore/sensorially excite self or others /as well as engage others.

  1. You will also be an attendee at the conference, what are you hoping to gain during those three days?

Clues to some of the questions in drama therapy that I’m working on.

About the Presenters

John Bergman 

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Returned to applied theatre where the boundary with drama therapy is really less clear, less acute. Just finished, for example, a one-hour show based on working with a Roma about what it means to be persecuted and forgotten in his own country of Romania. This was presented to the European Federation of Drama Therapy in Bucharest this year (2016). Now we are trying to get this into the Romanian educational system. My work recently is back to using the therapeutic/socio-dramatic/psychological/political edges to effect change as well as constantly working on the “nut” of what is the neurobiology of drama therapy.

Jessica Litwak: Director, Playwright, Performer

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Jessica Litwak, PhD, RDT www.jessicalitwak.com is an international theatre practitioner, drama therapist and recognized leader in the field of socially engaged theatre. She is an award winning playwright, Equity actor, innovative educator, director, and puppet builder. Her company the H.E.A.T. Collective www.heatcllective.org produces workshops, events, and productions that bring together the practices of Healing, Education, and Activism through Theatre.  She has worked extensively in Palestine/Israel, Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, Turkey, India, and throughout Central, Eastern, and Western Europe. Litwak is a trained practitioner of Playback, Psychodrama, and Theatre of the Oppressed. As the Founder and Artistic Director of The New Generation Theatre Ensemble (www.ngte.org) she built training and performance opportunities for youth.

Litwak is a graduate of RADA, NYU, Columbia University and Antioch University with a BFA in acting, an MFA in playwriting and a Ph.D. in Leadership and Change.As an actress Litwak has performed on stages across the U.S., and in Europe. Most recently in the Iranian White Rabbit Red Rabbit and in The Spoken and The Unspoken and as the title role in all three plays of The Emma Goldman Day Happening. She is a also convener of the Arts and Peace Commission for The International Peace and Research Association and an arts curator for The Rhodes campaign for European City of Culture.

Student mentorship at the #NADTA2016 Conference

The countdown to the 2016 NADTA Conference has begun! The Student Liaison Committee is looking forward to sharing fun activities and providing opportunities throughout the conference for all students and newcomers to connect with colleagues from all around the world.  While we are, all of us, on a continuum of learning, it is our hope that your conference experience is wonderfully one of connection, creativity, education, mentor-ship, and growth.  Please look for our table when you arrive for a complete itinerary of conference events planned especially for you! Bring your most enthusiastic, playful, inquisitive SELF!  We are so excited to meet you!

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See you soon!

Your Student Liaison Committee

Puppets for the people

Hello amazing community! Hope this Monday finds you getting ready and excited about conference! Today we have yet another Presenter Spotlight that we want to share with you. This time we introduce to you Jessica Litwak, MFA, PhD, RDT who will be presenting the workshop “Puppets for the People” on Saturday at 2:00pm. You can still register for it if you have not yet.  Enjoy!

Puppets for the People 

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Participants will join Jessica Litwak, master puppet builder, theatre artist and drama therapist for this fun and therapeutic puppet- building workshop. They will learn how to make a puppet and bring him or her to life. These puppets allow workshop participants to tell their stories and freely express themselves with hands, body and voice.

Using mischief and heart, these special puppets are easily and quickly made with newspaper and tape. First, we build the “brain” of the puppet; the heads are filled with poems, wishes, dreams and meaningful objects. After we find the face in the paper, hold and mold the face with masking tape, the faces are decorated with local crafts and found objects. Finally, the puppeteers write plays for the puppets and create small with their new creations.

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These workshops, done in Palestine, Israel, India, Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, and all over Europe and the U.S., serve local communities by encouraging self-expression, community building and healing from trauma.

About the Presenter 

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Jessica Litwak: Director, Playwright, Performer

Jessica Litwak, PhD, RDT www.jessicalitwak.com is an international theatre practitioner, drama therapist and recognized leader in the field of socially engaged theatre. She is an award winning playwright, Equity actor, innovative educator, director, and puppet builder. Her company the H.E.A.T. Collective www.heatcllective.org produces workshops, events, and productions that bring together the practices of Healing, Education, and Activism through Theatre.  She has worked extensively in Palestine/Israel, Lebanon, Egypt, Iraq, Turkey, India, and throughout Central, Eastern, and Western Europe. Litwak is a trained practitioner of Playback, Psychodrama, and Theatre of the Oppressed. As the Founder and Artistic Director of The New Generation Theatre Ensemble (www.ngte.org) she built training and performance opportunities for youth.

Litwak is a graduate of RADA, NYU, Columbia University and Antioch University with a BFA in acting, an MFA in playwriting and a Ph.D. in Leadership and Change.As an actress Litwak has performed on stages across the U.S., and in Europe. Most recently in the Iranian White Rabbit Red Rabbit and in The Spoken and The Unspoken and as the title role in all three plays of The Emma Goldman Day Happening. She is a also convener of the Arts and Peace Commission for The International Peace and Research Association and an arts curator for The Rhodes campaign for European City of Culture.

Make sure to check out this video about her workshop:

 

See you very soon,

Your Social Media Committee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Pre Education Post: Reflections of a Scarf Lady

Dear Drama Therapy community: Just a few more days until Seattle where we will be celebrating “The Power of Dramatic Play.”  It has been a pleasure to be your Pre-Education Blog Team.  To conclude this blog, long-term drama therapist, Janna Mitchell, reflects on her career of bringing play and imagination to Community Mental Health.  We look forward to seeing you in Seattle!

Warmly,

Beth, Chris, Kim and Janna

Reflections of a Scarf Lady

In August 2016 I looked around the rooms, the people, the place of the “not for profit” mental health agency where I had been employed, for the most part happily, for the last twenty-one years and three months. I was moving on and I was breathing it in. I had worked in many different positions and locations, full time then part time, running a day program, as a clinical supervisor and as a therapist. As in every agency I had opportunities to move into positions that moved me farther away from direct client contact-but this was not for me. As a graduate from CIIS drama therapy program (1991) I started at the agency with a rich tool bag of drama therapy knowledge and practice and this is what I have enjoyed using the most, applying drama therapy to support mental health consumers.

I am most fond of groups-groups of all shapes and sizes. There was the Monday morning movement and dance group that I facilitated for several years. We had a beautiful big space and great rhythmic music that was hard to resist moving to. The emphasis was on expressing feelings through movement. I remember a shy male client with downcast eyes and a slow gait, transform through the music into a giddy hand shaking, smiling dancer, connecting with others as we created couples then group dances. We pulled scarves out of the scarf bag, scarves of all shapes and sizes, colors and patterns to express, swirl and whip into patterns. Dancing through different rhythms the closure of this group would flow into a rest time with a gentle loving kindness group meditation with an focus of “bringing the love back to ourselves” for the start of the new week.

I pause for a word about scarves—they just come to me. I think I am a scarf magnet. I recently passed on a bag of them to a drama therapist friend because I had too many. Clients would identify me with “oh you are that scarf lady” I feel a warm affiliation with the label “scarf lady”

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For many years there was the strengths based “Women Supporting Women Group” It was a great opportunity for creative expression, projection, connection, celebration, rituals, scene work, improvisation and exploration. As a drama therapist learning how to draw in shyer group members,I found that women opened up as they supported each other. Doubling for another woman, fostered a deeper empathy and group connection.  Issues of depression, anxiety, hearing voices; mood swings were brought into the room, explored and supported by a circle of strengths, coping skills, and women’s wisdom. Humor and play were used to help us exaggerate life situations from tragedy to comedy. Often we came back to our intention in the group, which was to support each member in a safe place to find strengths and healing.

Over twenty-one years I have worked with many, many individuals. I recall several clients who initially withdrawn, after fostering trust through sharing the invitation to stand stretch move and then transform the room into a guided tour of what is really going on in their head. I am taken, as privileged witness, to the dark caves of fear as well as the places of resilience and support. In this “guided tour of the inside of my mind” we can build new rooms/places resources to cope better with mental illness.

With others I bring the cart of toys and puppets, collected over the years, and used to project and materialize many tales, inner worlds and stories of resolution, forgiveness and self-compassion.

I was very happy to be able to take my drama therapy approach into staff trainings. My particular focus and passion was leading self-care trainings (Burn-Out Out) Over the years I had personally learned how to switch on the refresh button using,  but not limited to, regular meditation and gratitude practice, bike riding and friendships. In the self-care workshop we sculpted living statues into “the burnout machine” Attendees were able to build a group representation of what it means to be suffering from burnout. After taking in the images of burnout the “one time theater group” that we had just invented, co-create a contrasting living group sculpture of self-care, conducted with sound and movement. The contrast makes an emotional impression, the hope to inspire on-going self-care practice. I bring guided meditation into the workshop as staff take the opportunity to go inward, to find their unique gifts and supports for self-care that we then share though the circle of scarves that we join together weaving the group connection in our closing circle.

I started my career as a drama therapist in my late thirties and now I am in my early sixties. I am by no means “done.” Although I have made a geographic and lifestyle change I hauled my bags of scarves, boxes of puppets and toys and art supplies galore across the state line.

Today I have a new job working in a milieu setting with psychiatric patients. I have talked about the props I use in practice (scarves, puppets) but with drama therapy all I need is a body and the chutzpah to dive into the free realm of imagination. I am walking through the hallways with a patient who is restless and sad. She is telling me how much she loves and yearns for nature. “Look!” I say, “Look at this beautiful forest we are walking through, the tall trees, the birds—can you hear them?” She looks at me, for a moment quizzically, and then smiles. “Yes” she says, (taking up the invitation) “ I hear the birds! Is that a lake over there?” “Shall we go for a swim?” I ask. “Yes! Yes!” We dive in.

How grateful I am for these years of being able, in small ways, to alleviate suffering and to encourage play, spontaneity and imagination.

Thank you Drama Therapy consciousness! Thank you for all those who have contributed to and inspired this green field. You are my heart and soul.  You are my sunshine. Let’s play!

Sincerely,

Janna Mitchell RDT BCT

 

 

Presenter Spotlight #3:Gary Raucher, MA, LMFT, RDT/BCT, F. Antonio Ramirez Hernandez, PsyD and Denise Boston, PhD, RDT

Hello Drama Therapy Community!!

Your Social Media Committee here to let you know more information about the amazing workshops you can attend during the #NADTA2016 Conference! Today we introduce to you, Gary Raucher, MA, LMFT, RDT/BCT, F. Antonio Ramirez Hernandez, PsyD  and Denise Boston, PhD, RDT and their workshop: Dueling Masks: Playing with Discomfort at the Intersections of Privilege & Oppression which will be taking place on Sunday October 30th at 9:00amEnjoy!

  1. What is your presentation/performance/workshop about?  What are you hoping the community/attendees will learn from it? 

Our “Dueling Masks” workshop aims to engage participants in playful ways – improvisation, role-play, sculpting, and mask work – to explore Dr. Ken Hardy’s ideas on engaging diversely composed groups in productive conversations about difference, privilege/oppression, and social justice. As we know, these can be thorny topics. We believe participants will benefit through personal learning about engaging in such conversations, while also acquiring practical skills to bring to these kinds of exchanges in their work and social settings.

Dr. Hardy’s work illuminates several factors that can promote or impede healthy, progressive conversations about diversity in groups. As presenters, we have developed experiential processes to advance participants’ understanding of three central Hardy tenets:

  • Engaging in meaningful discussions on identity and difference requires that all participants recognize the need for safety, while further recognizing the difference between safety and comfort! We need to recognize our habituated comfort zones and be willing to forgo them to engage meaningfully. We need to understand and operationalize the difference!
  • We need to recognize, explore, and take ownership of the privileged and subjugated “roles” in our own intersectional identities. Further, we need to understand how (and when) we reflexively play out our subjugated roles to defend privileged positions when they feel threatened. Our ‘good intentions’ do not neutralize a hurtful impact.
  • We need to commit to improved relationships across difference through dynamic ongoing and engaged interaction, and we must distinguish this from the stagnation resulting from mere tolerance.
  1. What is one thing you want participants to start thinking about in regards to your presentation/performance/workshop?

The polarization between groups in our current national and international body politic underlines how vital it is to humanize and bring compassion to work on diversity and inclusion. As we know, drama (and other arts) offer distanced, creative, and pro-social means to promote dynamism and fullness in interpersonal exchanges. As drama therapists, we have many skills we can use to support dialog between people across diverse backgrounds, identifications, and affiliations – if we have the heart to do so, and are working on our own healing in this area.

  1. Why do you think creativity is important in the healing of trauma and the processing of emotions?

Creativity puts each of us in touch with the fact that we are more than our challenges, traumas, or wounds. When we are emotionally identified with our hurts, we lose perspective on how much more there is to us, beyond trauma or wounding. Creativity is one way to engage a vital aspect of our humanity that transcends any hurts we may experience. I think of creativity as an attribute of the spiritual core within everyone, which they can learn to tap into. When we reconnect with our capacity to create, we are lifted out of the absorption in pain we may have fallen into. Not to make this sound easy, but this is a vital first step on the road to recovery and attaining a health-restoring perspective.

  1. How would you describe what Dramatic Play is?

Suzana Pendzik’s concept of Dramatic Reality is helpful here. It describes what theatre artists have known for eons. Dramatic play enables us to fuse our imagination and inner narratives with embodied enactments in physical reality. We occupy a state of dual consciousness, a liminal condition that enables us to juxtapose the inner and outer realms, learning how we inhabit both, and how we relate each to the other. We learn how our inner processes of thought, affect, and projection shape our relationship to the outer world, and conversely, how playfully experimenting with outward expression reshapes the inward understanding of ourselves and the world. Dramatic play is a tool for transformation. Application of this principle to social justice work is an emergent development starting to come into its own, and we want this workshop to be part of that.

  1. You will also be an attendee at the conference, what are you hoping to gain during those three days?

A drama therapy conference is a meeting of hearts and minds, an opportunity to learn and expand. As a conclave of creative beings who are also committed to healing, these gatherings provide an intensive environment for exposing ourselves to new inspirations, insights, and approaches to our work. The intensity is stimulating and can feel overwhelming at times! But, we develop skills to pace ourselves and assimilate the treasures.

About the Presenters

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Gary Raucher, MA, LMFT, RDT/BCT, (Registered Drama Therapist/ Board Certified Trainer of drama therapists) is Professor of Drama Therapy at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS), and serves on its Faculty Diversity and Inclusion Committee. He is a licensed MFT and Drama Therapist with broad clinical experience in community agencies, hospitals, and in private practice.   His community work has included introducing drama therapy as a modality for HIV support-groups in the 1990s, and he has also worked in behavioral research aimed at reducing transmission of HIV-AIDS.  Keenly interested in transpersonal and somatic psychology, Gary has presented at conferences internationally on the combined use of meditation and embodied action techniques as a form of integral practice. He is a past Vice-President of the North American Drama Therapy Association (NADTA) and received its 2015 Annual Service Award.

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Denise Boston, PhD, RDT, is Dean of Diversity and Inclusion and Associate Professor in the MA Expressive Arts Therapy Program at California Institute of Integral Studies. Her programmatic and research interests are in the areas of community-based initiatives and expressive arts intervention. As an Expressive Arts and Drama Therapy consultant/trainer, Denise has implemented multimodal arts programs with diverse populations, particularly African American children, adolescents and families. Over the past 25 years she has devoted her teaching and research to the increased understanding of urban trauma and expressive arts therapeutic approaches to address mental health care disparities of people of African descent.  Denise earned a B.F.A in Drama from the University of the North Carolina School of the Arts, an M.A. in Psychology and Counseling from Goddard College, and a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Walden University.

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Antonio Ramirez Hernandez, PsyD, has a half-time faculty position in the Drama Therapy program at California Institute of Integral Studies. He has presented at the North American Association of Drama Therapy exploring gender and spirituality though drama therapy. His teaching interests include cross-cultural counseling, transpersonal psychotherapy and clinical training and supervision. He is also in private practice. He is nationally and internationally recognized for creating Centro de Capacitación para Erradicar la Violencia Intrafamiliar Masculina (CECEVIM), a methodology for working with Latino men who abuse their partners.  Antonio is the author of the book Violencia Masculina en el Hogar (Masculine Violence in the Home)(Editorial Pax, Mexico, 2000) and the chapter “CECEVIM—Stopping Male Violence in the Latino Home” for the book Programs for Men Who Batter(Civic Research Institute, 2002). He is also researching how shamanic practices can be used in psychotherapy.

Sincerely,

Your Social Media Committee

 

 

Enjoy Seattle Sights and Sounds during the #NADTA2016 Conference!

Seattle Sights and Sounds

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Unless you are longing for a shopping mall or hanging out at the airport, you are going to want to make your way to downtown Seattle 13 miles to the north. For $2.50 in change, cross the street and catch the LINK LOCAL downtown and then ride the Monorail to the Seattle Center. Take advantage of the Dia de Muertos Festival over the weekend with free traditional folkdance and music, exquisite arts, face masks, processions, and special foods. Ride to the top of the Space Needle and enjoy a cup of famous Seattle coffee from the observation deck. If you have time, head down to Pike Place Market for a flavor of our local food, art, and street performers.  Closer to the conference center, you can do some self-care with a walk on the on the nearby Des Moines Creek Trail.

We hope you take time during the conference to enjoy all that Seattle has to offer! See you in a couple of weeks!

Sincerely,

Don Crites

Presenter Spotlight #2: Daniel Doyle, RDT, LMFT, LPCC, Certified EMDR Therapist

Hello Creative Community!

We have more exciting information coming your way regarding some of the workshops you can attend during the #NADTA2016 Conference! Today we introduce to you, Daniel Doyle, RDT, LMFT, LPCC, Certified EMDR Therapist and his workshop: Using Guided Visualization and Dramatic Play to Install Empowering Resources for Clients which will be taking place on Sunday October 30th at 9:00am. Enjoy!

1.What is your presentation/performance/workshop about?  What are you hoping the community/attendees will learn from it? 

My workshop is focused on assessment, preparation, trauma work, and closure / containment.  Attendees will learn about (1) assessing a client’s readiness to engage in trauma work (2) preparing clients to engage in trauma work through providing them with resources using guided visualizations and mindfulness techniques (3) guiding clients through trauma work with a combination of drama therapy and concepts from EMDR Therapy. And, (4) providing containment and safely and effectively closing a session that has stirred up strong emotions. Participants will be experiencing the exercises firsthand in addition to learning about the concepts involved. I am committed to giving participants in my workshop a number of concrete tools that they can use with their own clients when they return to the settings in which they practice.

2. What is one thing you want participants to start thinking about in regards to your presentation/performance/workshop?

I would like participants to start thinking about and noticing their clients’ abilities to regulate emotions, and self-soothe. Also to notice what resources their clients have for cultivating a sense of calmness in their lives. These could be helpful concepts for participants to explore for themselves as well.

3.  Why do you think Creativity is important in the healing of trauma and the processing of emotions?

Creativity is important in our approach to treating trauma as it allows different parts of the brain to become engaged in processing traumatic material. I think it’s crucial to think about trauma in terms of how the brain and body respond to and store traumatic events. When we introduce creativity it allows the client to see the traumatic event from a new perspective. When the trauma is activated through an enactment, sculpting process, or psychodrama, a person can have an initial strong experience of the emotions and body sensations related to the trauma. This can be followed by a more distanced, or observing perspective. This allows the information which has been stuck in a loop in the primitive part of the brain, to start to be shared with parts of the brain that are able to put the event into context and to discharge the negative emotions and negative beliefs about the self that have been associated with the traumatic event. Empowering (and more accurate) beliefs about the self can then emerge and become identified with the traumatic event (taking the place of the previously negative beliefs about the self). Sitting and talking about trauma can be helpful, but in some cases it can simply perpetuate the negative emotions and negative beliefs about the self that came up during the trauma.

4.   How would you describe what Dramatic Play is?

I would describe Dramatic Play as putting “our stuff” into action through playing it out with one another. It’s such a natural thing for us to do, particularly when we are children, and it can be so empowering and freeing to continue that practice as we go through the various stages of development in our lives. In my experience dramatic play allows for expression of shadow aspects of the self that may be less likely to come to light through talk therapy alone.

5.  You will also be an attendee at the conference, what are you hoping to gain during those three days?

I’m looking forward to reconnecting with former teachers, colleagues, and friends as well as meeting new people who are using drama therapy in their work. I’m also looking forward to attending some experiential workshops, and getting inspired by what is being offered at the conference.

About the Presenter 

As seen on a Sussex Directories Inc site

Daniel Doyle, RDT, LMFT, LPCC, Certified EMDR Therapist is in private practice in South Pasadena, CA.  He has a BFA in Drama from New York University, and an MA in Psychology from the Drama Therapy Program at the California Institute of Integral Studies. Daniel has worked in variety of settings as a drama therapist and a supervisor, including acute psychiatric units, residential programs for at risk youth, addiction treatment centers, and  with veterans dealing with PTSD. Daniel is currently exploring the use of EMDR in conjunction with drama therapy to assist clients in healing from trauma. Daniel is a proud member of the SoCal Chapter of NADTA. He will also be presenting on his work at the Expressive Therapy Summit in New York City later this year.

How to move around Seattle during the #NADTA2016 Conference!

Hello to my fellow conference attendees from Maureen of the Hospitality committee! Dorothy, Don and I are still working away at a play and relaxation room that we hope will be a great sensory break for you while experiencing all the excitement of the conference.

In the mean time: Here are some more tips to consider for those of you who like to plan ahead:

Transportation

            -Light Rail: The Sea-Tac Link Light Rail station is directly outside the front of the conference hotel. It’s about 7 stops before you begin to get into Seattle proper (SODO station) and 12 stops to the most “downtown” station (Westlake). The trip to that station will take you about 40 minutes from the hotel, but is an easy way to avoid driving and parking if you have the time.

light rail .jpg(image is from: http://grist.org/article/2009-07-13-seattle-light-rail-finally-opens-doors-to-passengers/)

            –Bus to Southcenter: The local tourist agency offers a free shuttle that stops at several area hotels (including our conference location) and brings riders to Southcenter Mall. This will be the most convenient location for a wide variety of well-known restaurants and shops. A schedule will be included in your welcome bags, but if you want to plan ahead, check out this link

Utilize the airport

            Since the airport is right across the street from the conference, it can be accessed via the Link Light Rail station. Here’s a video on how that works from the opposite direction https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v55vald5tMw

  • If you are flying into the airport you can stay on your concourse or the main concourse and dine from a wide variety of choices before heading to your hotel.
  • Even if you don’t have a ticket for that day, there are some dining options located pre-security that you can take advantage of.

Options listed here: http://seatacshops.com/eat

Come Early/stay late

We don’t want you to lose and precious conference learning time, but we encourage you to see the city. So, come a day or two early and stay a day or two later. You can always check out a local Airbnb or a home share with a local DT if you are trying to save money.

See a Show!

If you are here longer, around the conference dates there is plenty of good theatre in Seattle.

-The 5th Avenue Theatre has “Man of La Mancha”. They offer $20 Day-of-Show tickets for students and those under 25 as well as theater arts industry employees, with valid Ids. See website for more info.

                       -The Paramount has “Beautiful: The Carole King Musical”

                       -Seattle Opera has “Hansel and Gretel”

Also check out: Seattle Musical Theatre, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Shakespeare, and for some improv and comedy look into Unexpected Productions or Jet City Improv.

Happy planning and see you in just a few weeks!

– Your Hospitality Committee