In Harmony with the Elements:
Drama Therapy and Wellness

North American Drama Therapy Association

35th Annual Conference

Yosemite National Park
October 30 - November 2, 2014

Life in Yosemite is a place of contradictions and paradox, a site where the various elements join in a tenuous balance to sustain life and foster growth. In order to maintain the cycle of life, destruction and rebirth coexist in the delicate dance of nature. The heat and destruction of fire are required in order for the majestic sequoia groves to bring forth new growth. Water carves constant change through intricate canyons of solid stone, and the atmosphere is frequently charged with intense and powerful electrical storms. It is rugged and peaceful, intense and calm, filled with immovable rock and flowing water, raging fire and glacial ice.

Similarly, the work of drama therapy is rich with paradox and contradiction, an active dance to balance the various elements of change. As drama therapists, we see this balancing act in the lives of those we work with as well as our own lives. How does drama therapy foster balance? What are the elements of healing at work within our practice? How does one play, engage, perform and negotiate the paradoxes? How do we as drama therapists engage with differing cultures and contrasting identities? How do we respond to imbalanced social roles and power dynamics? We engage with our clients’ narratives and witness their imbalances and contradictions on a daily basis – how does this affect our personal story, creativity, and expression as drama therapists? As human beings? How does balance in our lives impact that in our clients? Can we create a place for the wildfire to rage, and simultaneously hold the tenderness beneath that makes way for new growth? Can the ancient solid foundation and constantly moving flow co-exist?

Within the paradox and contradiction, like the wind or the water, we act as forces for change – altering the landscape. Through drama therapy we create space for natural healing and hold the contradictions, allowing our clients their solidness and fluidity, their fire and ice, their own process of healing and sprouting new growth. As we find balance and create room for paradox we help to create a paradigm shift that molds the very fabric of our culture and our community.

Please join us for the NADTA 35th Annual Conference at the beautiful and restorative Tenaya Lodge in Yosemite National Park, California, from October 29th – November 2nd, 2014. Together we will navigate and explore the elements of healing and change through drama therapy. We will examine the contradictions and paradoxes and see how to find balance for ourselves and those with whom we work

If you have any questions regarding the conference, please email