The user-friendliness of drama: Implications for drama therapy and psychodrama admission and training

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article addresses the claim that drama is a user-friendly art form that can be mastered relatively intuitively with less reliance on knowledge and practice-driven skills than other artistic modalities. Attention is given to the concept that this inherent quality warrants revisiting the drama-based prerequisites for drama therapy and psychodrama training. To this end, I first review the arts-based prerequisites for music therapy, art therapy, dance movement therapy, as well as drama therapy and psychodrama training in Israel, the US and the UK. I then highlight the three main developmental, psychosocial, and artistic reasons that underpin the argument regarding the perceived user-friendliness of drama, a quality that is both a blessing and a problem for the student and teacher of drama therapy and psychodrama. The paradox associated with the user-friendliness of drama is that although the lay and intuitive sense of familiarity with drama makes it appealing to many students who lack solid pre-training experience with drama, some may face considerable challenges in understanding and trusting the dramatic processes as therapists in training. I suggest how drama therapy and psychodrama training programs can fulfill the requirements for in-depth knowledge of drama, theater, and/or performance that distinguishes drama-based therapies from other creative arts therapies. Suggestions for specific drama-based requirements before and during training are put forward.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-108
Number of pages8
JournalArts in Psychotherapy
StatePublished - Jul 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier Ltd


  • Creative arts therapies
  • Drama therapy
  • Education
  • Psychodrama
  • Students
  • Training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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