Psychodrama may be defined as using the stage and action to re-examine and question the problems people experience, and to become aware of what is happening. With a group, sometimes a moment, sometimes a trauma, and sometimes an annoying incident of the day or a dream, is enacted. The lead player (protagonist) selects supporting players (antagonists) for the event, subject, person or dream he/she wants to enact. He/she gives them roles, which they play according to the wishes and directives of the lead player. From time to time, the lead player steps into the role of the persons he/she has assigned roles to, and tries to see the events through their eyes.
From birth, people take on various roles and start acting in accordance with them. These roles are sometimes inhibited, or sometimes played just as they have been taught, without any contribution from the creativity of the player. In such times, various psychological problems may arise. Then, it is necessary to change these roles, or try to play the role in a different way.
Psychodrama, developed in the 1920’s by Levi Moreno, is actually a simulation of real life. The lead player on the stage does not only place his/her troubles on the stage and question them, he/she may also try new solutions, or take on roles he/she never thought of playing and reach an awareness that can change the course of his/her life.
Any subject can be staged in psychodrama. Anybody, alive or dead, accessible or not, may be brought to the stage. The players on the stage may go wherever they wish, may be at any age they desire, or communicate with any persons they want. The subjects to be processed or the events taken in hand have no time limits. The past can be seen as the present or the future, and can be changed.
The group is one of the most important elements of the method in psychodrama. Group members narrate their feelings and experiences about the events on the stage, take some cuts from their own lives and try to establish similarities or differences. This sharing, just like the roles undertaken on stage, are extremely enlightening for those concerned.
Psychodrama groups may be formed on any subject by people of any age group. Groups of approximately 8 – 10 persons meet for 1 hour 30 minute sessions. The groups are managed by 1 or 2 therapists. The groups meet for a predetermined number of sessions, which can be increased according to the needs of the group.
Psychodrama groups, as well as being made up of people with psychological issues, are also open to people who want to get to know and discover themselves, and to clear any and all obstructions they are experiencing in their lives. At the Bengi Semerci Institute, works to establish a psychodrama group called “States of Womanhood,” directed at women, is continuing. This group, in which we are expecting the participation of women of all ages and professions, will process all subjects pertaining to being a woman within life, in society, at home, at work, on the street, and will provide the participants with the opportunity to face and discover themselves and everything that relates to being a woman, and to try new ways for the things they wish to change.
Aditionally, to work with the exam stress people of all ages experience repeatedly at different times in their lives, an “Exam Stress” psychodrama group is also in the stages of being established.
Psychodrama is one of the most magical and striking methods of bringing a person face to face with his/her self. As Özdemir Asaf declares in his verses:
Yesterday towards morning I talked to myself
Aslı Soyer, MS