PSYCHODRAMA IN UK
edited by Zoltan Figush
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. The United Kingdom’s 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.
THE BRITISH PSYCHODRAMA ASSOCIATION
The British Psychodrama Association (BPA) is a professional association for psychodrama psychotherapists and sociodramatists in the UK and Ireland, currently having 150 members. Membership is open to anyone who is interested in psychodrama and sociodrama, and has four distinct categories: Trainer (26 – including qualified trainers and senior trainers); Practitioner (82 – completed a BPA accredited diploma course); Trainee (16 – enrolled on a BPA accredited diploma course); and, Ordinary (26 – retired practitioners, certificate trainees, general public).
Information about the BPA, training schools, open workshops and psychodramatists is available at: www.psychodrama.org.uk Our administrator can also be contacted via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Psychodrama was established in the UK via two routes. In the 1970’s, former students of Moreno, Dean and Doreen Elefthery, travelled periodically from the USA to Europe and trained a number of practitioners, including Jenny Biancardi (who later became a senior trainer with the Northern School of Psychodrama).
In 1971, Marcia Karp, who qualified as a psychodramatist in 1968 from the Beacon Academy in New York, travelled to the UK from the USA. With introduction by Zerka Moreno, Malcolm Pines, Issac Marks and others at the Maudsley Hospital, she began to run an interdisciplinary training group. (Earlier, in 1953, Moreno had given lectures at the Maudsley and at Maxwell Jones’s therapeutic community, also having visited the Royal Medical Society and the Bedford College for Women.) With a growing demand for psychodrama training, in 1974, together with her partner and co-director Ken Sprague, Marcia established the Holwell Psychodrama Centre in North Devon, later to become the Howell International Centre for Psychodrama and Sociodrama. Ken qualified in Sociodrama in Australia, having been trained by Warren Parry.
The Holwell Psychodrama Centre thrived for over 25 years until 2001, and attracted trainees from around the world, offering residential training, certification by trainees being achieved usually within 3-5 years. Zerka Moreno came yearly for a period of 20 years to run workshops at the Centre, and Anne Ancelin Schutzenberger also taught the subjects of transgenerational trauma and geno-sociograms. The first generation of UK psychodramatists and trainers were trained at Holwell.
The British Psychodrama Association was founded in 1984, Paul Holmes being its first Chair, and Marcia the Honorary President for a period of 11 years. New training schools have started to open, at one point having had seven training schools in the UK.
PSYCHODRAMA TRAINING IN THE UK
- The Birmingham Institute for Psychodrama (BIP)
The Birmingham Institute for Psychodrama was established in 2008 by Senior Trainers Susie Taylor and Clark Baim. BIP runs open workshops, a one-year certificate training in creative counselling / action methods, and a one-year certificate training in sociodrama. The institute also offers psychodrama psychotherapy to private clients, supervision, consultancy and in-house staff training. BIP has trained psychodrama psychotherapists to full, diploma level qualification since 2008, and has recently closed recruitment to the full diploma programme after Susie Taylor’s retirement in October 2018. The diploma programme may re-open at a future date.
- The London Centre for Psychodrama Group and Individual Psychotherapy
Established in 1990 by Jinnie Jefferies and James Bamber. The current co-directors are Jinnie Jefferies and Anna Chesner. Other regular teaching staff are Dr Maxine Daniels and Chris Andrews. Guest tutors have included Marcia Karp, Leandra Perrotta, Kate Kirk, Di Adderley, Clark Baim and Hannes Krall.
The centre has been a member of FEPTO for many years and the co-directors are also members of EAP.
The training takes place at the Maudsley Hospital in London and attracts participants from UK and internationally.
The model is based firmly in classical Role analysis and there is a psychodynamic, integrative and systemic approach to the work. The training covers both group and individual psychotherapy as well as applied action methods including sociodrama and sociometry.
The training is United Kingdom Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP) recognised through the BPA as a member organisation of the UKCP, and is in the Humanistic and Integrative College of the UKCP.
There are approximately 16 students at any time, and the Centre also welcomes guests on the themed weekends, and experiential weekends. Experiential weekends are an opportunity to experience the method, without a training agenda. Open Access and Training Practice weekends are themed, and give guests the chance to experience psychodramas directed by staff and senior trainees respectively. We attract guests who have an interest in the theme, or wish to get to know more about psychodrama and the training. Each year we welcome guest tutors to deliver training according to their speciality.
The London Centre for Psychodrama also runs a cross professional Creative Supervision Diploma training for psychotherapists and senior practitioners from other disciplines.
- The Northern School of Psychodrama (NSP)
NSP was formed in 1995 by a group of 5 who met for an afternoon at Fawcett Mill Fields in Cumbria. They were; Jenny Biancardi and Anne Bannister who were senior trainers of psychodrama and John Casson, Jan Costa and Celia Scanlan who were trainers; later John and Celia became senior trainers. The vision was that they would cover the north of England and Scotland these being so far away from London, Oxford and Devon where the training took place at the time. It was agreed to move training around the area with weekends in Glasgow, Manchester and Newcastle. There would be a week-long residential in Cumbria at Fawcett Mill Fields.
There was training happening in Newcastle under Jenny’s tutelage but this was not in line with changes in training standards as Jenny was working virtually, single handed. The first cohort comprised the trainees studying with Jenny at the time (about 6 trainees) and at least another 6 trainees. This meant NSP began a fledgling training programme with a good number of trainees several of who were well advanced in their training, a rich mixture. It was not long before NSP were calling on the external examiner Dorothy Langley to conduct the final exams.
In 2004 NSP joined FEPTO. However, due to the declining numbers of trainees, NSP had to make the decision to withdraw their membership of EAP in 2010.
The 5 original trainers are now retired from NSP. Training currently carries on under Sandra Grieve, Lynette Green and Emma Hagen, all former graduates of the NSP. Currently they offer certificate programmes only; however they are optimistic that the Diploma level training will be up and running again before too long.
- Oxford School of Psychodrama and Integrative Psychotherapy (OSPIP)
The Oxford School has not been offering training for some years, and is currently in the process of setting up a new diploma level psychodrama training.
SOCIODRAMA IN THE UK
Sociodrama training in the UK started with Marcia Karp and Ken Sprague at Holwell. Ron Wiener was Ken’s first graduate in 1996 and for the next few years concentrated on running short courses and getting sociodrama established within the BPA.
In the late 1990’s, Francis Batten came over to the UK from Australia, and together with Ron established MPV/SAM (Multi-Purpose Vehicle / Sociodrama and Action Methods), as a sociodrama training school. They also started running diploma, certificate and short courses in sociodrama in China, Russia and many other European countries.
Ron became a member of the scientific community that helped to run International Sociodrama Conferences, the first one being held in Portugal in 2006. In the same year Francis sadly passed away, and his place as co-leader of MPV/SAM was taken by Di Adderley, Ron and Di having become BPA accredited Senior Sociodrama Trainers. The school continued to run until 2012. At present, there is no formal training in sociodrama in the UK, but all the psychodrama schools now include 50 hours of sociodrama training in their curriculum.
Sociodrama continues in the UK in the form of SCAN (Sociodrama and Creative Action Methods Network), which links together those interested in the method in the UK and abroad. Di Adderley together with a few other qualified sociodramatists and trainees are now part of a European consortium developing sociodrama teaching across Europe.
UK based psychodramatists and sociodramatists have produced and published a significant number of handbooks and textbooks on psychodrama and sociodrama, some of which can be found on the below link:
THE BRITISH JOURNAL OF PSYCHODRAMA AND SOCIODRAMA
The British Journal of Psychodrama and Sociodrama intends to communicate, promote and advance writing of high quality that is relevant to the theory, practice, application and clinical research of Psychodrama, Sociodrama, Sociometry and related disciplines.
The Journal started in 1984, and is concerned with promoting the development of Psychodrama and its allied disciplines by providing a forum for debate between multiple professionals and students in the field.
The Journal is also interested in issues related to clinical practice, such as ethics and dilemmas of treatment and conflict presented within the therapeutic context, cultural and transpersonal issues.
The BPA publishes its newsletter Tele-tronic bi-monthly. Tele-tronic is an electronic newsletter with on average 10 pages of articles and photographs on what’s happening in the Psychodrama community in the UK and abroad. Tele-tronic is a space for news and views from BPA members and the Psychodrama community.
Electronic versions of Tele-tronic in PDF format are available to those interested in our work – these may be downloaded from the BPA Publications section of the BPA website.