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    A psychodrama workshop promises to help Chennaiites sort out their problems while having fun

    The shrinka��s couch could soon become defunct. Therapists have a new tool now a�� psychodrama. A creative group method that uses role playing and spontaneous dramatisation to address challenging situations, psychodrama is a concept that is quite popular abroad. But it is as yet underutilised in India. Magdalene Jeyarathnam, the director of East-West Center for Counselling and Training and the Indian Institute of Psychodrama, plans to change that.

    Paving the way is a seven-day psychodrama workshop being organised in Nungam-bakkam from December 13 to 19. The workshop will be moderated by Sue Daniel, a psychodramatist and psychotherapist from Melbourne, Australia. a�?Psycho-drama is not taught in any psychology department in the country,a�? says Jeyarathnam. a�?So we bring in trainers from abroad.a�?

    In the workshop, participants can expect to deal with multiple life situations that have relevance to everyone. Each situation will be handled by one person in the group a�� the protagonist a�� who will script the role play and ensure the groupa��s participation. a�?People who participate come away with answers to questions they didna��t realise they had,a�? she says. A background in psychotherapy or psychology is not a prerequisite to participate. In fact, Jeyarathnam hopes to attract a small group (not more than 15 to 17 people) from diverse fields like teaching, human resources and social work.

    News of the workshop is also sparking interest because of Jeyarathnama��s husband, Eric Miller, the man behind the World Storytelling Institute. Though there isna��t an overt resemblance between storytelling and psychodrama, he feels people will be able to find a connection because a�?a storyteller puts her listeners into the roles of the characters being addressed by her character… and this is similar to conducting psychodrama sessions.a�?

    At Nungambakkam, from 9 am to 4 pm. Cost: Rs 8,500. Details: 9840394282

    a�� Surya Praphulla Kumar

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