The purpose of AANZPA is to promote spontaneity in the Members of the Association and through them the spontaneity, creativity and co-creation of progressive relationships that strengthen the health and well-being of society in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand and in our relationships with those in other countries. (more...)
The vision is of able men and women all over the place expressing themselves relevantly in the ordinary here and now situations in which they live and work. This expression may be in silence, in building, in planning, in negotiating, in teaching, or in play, but it will be a responsive and creative expression, and expression that brings joy to the human spirit, that uplifts the soul, that makes us feel part of the universe again.
First established in 1980, AANZPA now has about 90 Ordinary and Distinguished members who are Certificated Psychodramatist, Sociodramatists, Sociometrists or Role-Trainers. 25 of these members are further certificated as Trainer, Educator and Practitioners (TEPs) or Educator Practitioners. A further 200 members are Associate Members. Members are mainly from Australia or Aotearoa New Zealand, with some in Japan, USA, UK or Europe
AANZPA is as an incorporated not-for-profit association in South Australia and in Aotearoa New Zealand. A copy of the AANZPA Constitution (PDF) is available.
An Executive is elected from certificated members every two years. You can Contact the President and other members of the AANZPA Executive.
Board of Examiners
A Board of Examiners is appointed by the Executive. Amongst other activities, they have established Training Institutes throughout Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand. Thorough training, supervision and rigorous assessment, certification procedures lead to a high level of practitioner competence.
Much of the life of the Association is in the Regions established in most cities in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand. AANZPA publishes an annual Journal as well as a regular bulletin, Socio, for members. Each year Association members conduct training and travel to conferences in other countries throughout the world.
There is a AANZPA flag statement on the PACFA site
. It describes psychodrama and its applications and has additional information about ANZPA itself.
To get in touch with AANZPA by email go to the Contact
AANZPA's postal address is: AANZPA, PO Box 232, DAW PARK, SA 5041, AUSTRALIA.
Objects of AANZPA
The purpose of the Association is to provide an organisation, property and facilities through which persons may associate for the following purposes:
- To promote spontaneity in the Members of the Association and through them the spontaneity, creativity and co-creation of progressive relationships that strengthen the health and well-being of society in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand and in our relationships with those in other countries.
- To establish and maintain a professional association of those qualified in the areas of psychodrama, sociodrama, sociometry and role training.
- To establish and maintain adequate standards for psychodramatists, sociodramatists, sociometrists or role trainers through a Board of Examiners.
- To develop means for certifying individuals as psychodramatists, sociodramatists, sociometrists or role trainers through a Board of Examiners.
- To develop means for accrediting institutes for training in psychodrama, sociodrama, sociometry or role training.
- To promote the establishment and reputation of psychodrama, sociodrama, sociometry and role training in Australia and Aotearoa New Zealand by:
- encouraging research, evaluation and dissemination of information by individuals and training institutes, or through publication of journals and other relevant publications.
- establishing and monitoring a code of ethics for members of the Association practising psychodrama, sociodrama, sociometry or role training.
President : Elizabeth (Diz) Synnot
Elizabeth Synnot LLB, MSocSci, Sociodramatist, TEPIT, has 35 years experience working with all types of groups in our society. She takes initiatives to create environments to experiment and play with alternative approaches and outlooks to collaborative living and work. Elizabeth enjoys the complexities of group life and the extension and ongoing fine tuning of our world views and our concomitant experience of the world. She gets alongside you as you picture a good life and have experiences in the social systems in which you live. She highly values paying attention to spontaneity, sociometry and role relationships in the context of working and living together. Elizabeth has a practice where she works with families, individuals, communities and work groups. Much of her engagement by organisations and community groups is in the arenas of leadership and team work.
Elizabeth receives regular professional supervision and training.
Vice President: Claire Guy
Claire is a TEP and trainer for Wellington Psychodrama Training Institute, Nelson Branch. She is a psychotherapist, trainer, supervisor and coach. She enjoys working with families and couples and loves to play with children.
Treasurer: Judy Sutherland
Judy is a psychodramatist, scientist and registered psychotherapist. She hails from Dunedin and now lives and works in Wellington. Yes it is a somewhat unusual combination, and makes for a very varied life. As a marine biologist she is mainly occupied in using DNA sequence data to understand species boundaries and classifications of New Zealand seaweeds. This means a lot of computer and lab work with occasional trips to the coast. She will start her psychotherapy practice in Wellington during 2016 after taking a sabbatical in 2015 when she moved from Auckland to Wellington along with her elderly cat.
Secretary & Web Liaison: Martin Putt
Martin is a Psychodramatist and registered Psychotherapist who works in Auckland. He works part time as a psychotherapist in a forensic inpatient setting with men with intellectual disabilities and in private practice with individuals (especially adolescents), couples and families. He lives in Westmere with his partner, Clare, and son, Jasper and is currently enjoying a foray into suburban beekeeping.
Committee member (Publications): Liz Marks
Membership Secretary: Cher Williscroft
Cher Williscroft is a TEP and was first accredited as a sociodramatist. She is a mediator and specialises in Conflict Resolution managing her own company Conflict Management Ltd http://conflictmanagement.co.nz
Committee member: Helen Phelan
Helen Phelan has had over 25 years of experience in organisational development in many contexts and has recently focused on topics related to social justice and human rights issues. Helen is a qualified Sociometrist.
Committee member: Craig Whisker
Craig Whisker, MA (Applied) in Social Work, is a Psychodramatist and Family Therapist in private practice in Kapiti, 50 kms north of Wellington, New Zealand. He is currently a doctoral candidate with the Bouverie Centre (La Trobe University) in Melbourne and has been conducting family therapy training throughout NZ and in Singapore since 2005. He was elected to the AANZPA Executive in January 2015.
Research on Psychodrama
AANZPA is committed to promoting the development and dissemination of psychodrama related research so that we continue to build the body of knowledge which informs our practice and strengthens our professional identity, and as a forum to promote communication with other professionals and with the community.
The genesis of new ideas occurs in the field, and research that builds on the conceptual developments of practitioners is more likely to advance our understanding of the types of issues that confront practitioners and their clients. We are therefore keen to build the identity of ‘researcher’ within the AANZPA community, so that practitioners can confidently pursue their research interests and/or build collaborative relationships with researchers.
AANZPA Research Committee
AANZPA’s Regions are established by the AANZPA executive and further the life of AANZPA and its members in each geographical area. There are six regions in Australia and four in Aotearoa New Zealand. The regions organise and advertise local events, organise practitioner seminars, have conferences and carry out other important tasks in the life of AANZPA.
The regions are:
Aotearoa New Zealand
AANZPA Regional Office Holders
President: Vanesa Valentine
Secretary: Selina Reid
Treasurer: David Grant
Committee: Faith Moon, Raywyn Brinsden, Cushla Clark
President: Renee Alleyne
Secretary: Dan Randow
Treasurer: Craig Whisker
Committee: Marcia Armadio, Carole Tanner, Kathleen Huitema.
President: Simon Gurnsey
Treasurer: Ali Begg
Committee: Sara Crane, Mairehe Tankersley, Gillian Rose, Ali Watersong
President: Ika Peuckert
President: Rob Brodie
Secretary: Joan Hamilton-Roberts
Treasurer: Clare Davies
Committee: Phil Corbett, Saaskia Dickson, Teresa Mears
President: Lynley McNab
ACT Coordinator: Willi Boettcher
Secretary: Lynne Burchmore
Treasurer: Jenny Postlethwaite
Committee: Penny Beran, Yehoshua, Tina Roussos, Jo Dewar
President: Christo Patty
Secretary: Bernadette Ruytna
Treasurer: Jenny McIntosh
Assistant Treasurer: Elizabeth Synnot
Committee: Neil Simmons, Anna Heriot, Jane Morgan, Wendy McIntosh
(currently in recess)
Caretaker President: Tony Densley
Caretaker Secretary: Jennifer Callanan
Caretaker Treasurer: Helen Densley
President: Helen Phelan
Treasurer: Kevin Franklin
Psychodrama is deep and complex
So much training and self-development is shallow and simplistic: 'Learn this and you will be able to do that'. But human beings don't work this way, because real life is complex and unpredictable. Knowing what to do
is very different from being able to do
it. Psychodrama is a profound way to look at life in all its complexity and chaos. And to do this in a teachable, straightforward manner. This way you can face life with confidence and spontaneity.
'Psyche' relates to the spirit or mind, while 'drama' relates to the stories acted out in life every day. By combining mind and action, psychodrama gets to the reality beneath the surface. It teaches you to 'feel colours' or 'see smells', as it were. It may sound a bit 'airy fairy' but it's not. Once you get below the surface you can learn things about yourself and the roles you play that will help you make a real difference to your life and the lives of people around you.
A typical psychodrama session
How does psychodrama work in practice? In a typical session, a small group of enthusiastic people work cooperatively to do their personal psychodramas and are led by an experienced practitioner. The trainer will ask someone to get up and act out some of their deepest personal or communal concerns, such as being bullied in the workplace, or the plight of the homeless in society. Others in the group will join in, acting the extra roles in the person's drama. The session develops spontaneously as each person in turn takes the lead role in their own drama or support roles in other people's dramas.
In this open-ended way, people find ideas and solutions they didn't know they had, and which they would never have found using conventional training or self-discovery methods. Instead of passively absorbing 'the answers', they actively find their own answers and help other people find theirs. The whole thing is spontaneous and fluid, not didactic and rigid.
Exploring what is important for you
As a participant in a psychodrama session you can explore the life situations that are of interest and concern to you through this type of dramatic enactment. In the course of the enactment you can express, refine and integrate new ways of being and doing. Psychodrama works for people of all ages and cultures with a wide range of life experiences. It strengthens your sense of self. It also strengthens your relationships with others and your effectiveness in groups.
Psychodrama assists individuals to:
- re-examine their current life situations, their past, their social networks and cultural context
- generate new perspectives on particular events or situations
- develop fresh responses to entrenched relationship dynamics
- prepare for future situations in which they wish to function with a greater degree of flexibility, vitality and immediacy
- bring together action, insight and 'here and now' experience as they engage with life
- enlarge perceptions of themselves and others
Psychodrama assists groups to:
- examine themselves and constructively work through the dynamics of group life
- recognise patterns of interaction and interpersonal dynamics
- investigate both the formal and informal relationship networks
- recognize their collective functioning and make informed decisions about changing group norms
History of psychodrama
Psychodrama is based on the philosophy and methods conceived of by psychiatrist Dr Jacob Moreno (1889-1974). It grew out of his experiments in Vienna in the 1920's with the theatre of spontaneity, a form of improvisational theatre. Moving to the USA in 1925 he continued to combine this with his interest in social science, exploring the possibilities of treating clients using group psychotherapy. This work has been further refined by many practitioners and training institutes around the world including in the United Kingdom, Central and Eastern Europe, USA, South America, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.
Though somewhat younger, Moreno was a contemporary of Sigmund Freud, and like Freud he developed techniques to get below the surface of ordinary life to help people heal. Yet where Freud used the couch, Moreno used the stage, and instead of sitting passively he was an active participant on this stage.
Moreno developed several techniques related to psychodrama, including sociodrama, sociometry, role theory and group psychotherapy, all of which are studied within the QTIP program.
Psychodrama is being actively used and taught throughout to the world. In places such as North and South America, Canada, the European Union, Russia, Turkey, South Korea, Vietnam, Taiwan, China, Japan.
Psychodrama is taught experientially. This means that the training is highly interactive, involving you with working with yourself, your life, the life of others and the the development of the group. This method of teaching provides a form of deep learning that grounds the learning in your identity not just a series of ideas.
Sociodrama is the application of the methods of Dr J L Moreno (1889-1974) to address social and group issues. Sociodrama has applications in education, organisational and community settings. The premise of sociodrama is that all human growth and human functioning is powerfully influenced by wider social influences in our culture. A human being grows up in a social field that exerts enormous influence that may be largely beyond conscious awareness. All our lives we have been bombarded with belief systems, value systems and ideas about how life should work. These social and cultural forces have a powerful influence on our every day actions at home, in groups, at work at play, in silence, when alone or when in relationships and in all group situation.
The sociodrama producer enables the group to
- Explore in action the unique social and cultural forces from the past, present and future that impact on our every action in life
- Help individuals, groups and organisations to free themselves from restrictive values and belief systems that are transmitted through culture since birth
- Orient participants to those values and belief systems that assist in the creative expression of one's unique vitality in any group situation
- Unravel the social and cultural makeup of groups through analysis of sub groups, describing the value and expectation systems that are operating
- Have a purposeful exploration of the relationship between the self and the groups they belong to within society and the world
- Promote deep understanding and respect between cultures, groups and sub group
- Observe and analyse a social system in order to improve group, community, organisational and team development
- learn effective metho ds in the resolution of conflict.
The sociodramatist applies principles of sociometry, role theory, organisational theory and psychodramatic techniques to assist individuals to bring about effective group and inter group functioning. The sociodramatist produces interaction in groups of different sizes and a configuration to identify the social concern of the group and formulate a sociodramatic question, develop a dramatic portrayal of the social system, and makes an analysis. Group members develop new perceptions and new approaches are opened up that lead to more open group norms and creative behaviour.
Sociometry is a methodology for stimulating, exploring and
measuring interpersonal relations invented by Dr J L Moreno (1889-1974). The
purpose of sociometry is to facilitate group task effectiveness and satisfaction
of participants by bringing about greater degrees of mutuality amongst people
and greater authenticity in relationships. Moreno noticed groups and communities
function with people being attracted to or draw away from others and the subsequent
networks and patterns of interaction these created. He discovered when people
chose whom they interacted with, the higher level of satisfaction in being
together, greater sense of belonging, achieving their purpose.
Moreno ’s early long-term study within
the Hudson School for girls in NY, gave profound results. Frequent runaways
had those at the home look for innovative solutions. Moreno was invited to
work with the girls and staff. He set about and invited each girl to choose
who she would prefer to sit at meals with. Their choices were mapped, and
enacted. The level of runaways dramatically reduced.
Sociometric methods have been developed over time, with
the principle that the investigator is an active group member. Material generated
from the group, belongs to the group members. Is not taken away by the researcher
and managers to make decisions about the group. Sociometric interventions
bring flexibility to systems and groups by investigating the choices with
the people who make them, and displaying the patterns of relationships created
by those choices. Stimulated by this information, group members create new
patterns for themselves, and enhance authentic companionship and greater
mutuality in the group.
All groups have intricate networks, based on both moment-by-moment
socio-emotional choices, and longer-term psychosocial networks, which endure
over time. Identifiable patterns of interactions become apparent. These networks
reflect alliances, hidden agendas, sub systems, sub groups and isolates gathering
around identifiable individuals, and their values, beliefs, and experiences.
Some liaisons become entrenched and others are enacted moment by moment.
In order to understand what makes a group tick, an assessment of the strengths
and qualities of relationships in the group is essential. People are curious
to know where they stand in relations to others; within their family, with
friends, with their bosses, peers and colleagues, and are curious about others’ relationships.
Who is close to their mother, their manager, who doesn’t get on with
who. Who will be chosen for project teams and on what basis? Who do
you go to, to know what is really going on here?
Sociometry means ‘companion measure’. Moreno
designed it as a measure, a new science. He wanted to create a society where
all humans achieve their potential to love, to share and face their truth.
By making choices overt and active, he hoped individuals would be more spontaneous,
authentic and organisations and group structures would become fresh clear
Sociometry enables us to enter the world of these interpersonal
choices, attractions and rejections, and their effects. Sociometry has methods
for displaying interpersonal choices, attractions and rejections and assists
in exploring and improving relationship dynamics; social network explorations,
sociograms, social atom maps, the classic sociometric test.
By making choices based on criteria, overt and energetic, individuals become
more spontaneous, and organisations and groups structures become fresh, clear
AANZPA - Conditions of Membership
- Payment of membership fees is continuous and applies until a letter of resignation is received by the Membership Secretary.
All Members agree to comply with the AANZPA Code of Ethics.
All Members will maintain a relationship of 'good standing’ with AANZPA.
Ordinary Members are eligible to be nominated and elected to the Executive Committee of AANZPA Inc. and to vote at the Annual General Meeting.
Ordinary members will keep their currency up to date or be in touch with the Currency Committee.
Associate Members and Affiliate Associate Members are not eligible to stand for the Executive Committee of AANZPA Inc. or vote at general meetings. In all other matters they have the rights and responsibilities as Ordinary Members.
Associate Members will maintain a Training Agreement with their AANZPA accredited Psychodrama Training Institute or Campus.
Associate Members will let the Membership Administrator know if anything changes that affects their membership or their Training Agreement is not current for the year.
Associate Members will receive supervision from a supervisor approved by an accredited Training Institute or Campus for their psychodrama related work.
Affiliate Associate Members who re-join a training program and have a current Training Agreement may apply to be an Associate Member using the normal membership joining process.
AANZPA offers a range of membership categories as outlined below. All members receive communications about AANZPA conferences and meetings along with occasional newsletters and our annual journal. Membership of AANZPA also brings automatic membership to the AANZPA regional association in your area. AANZPA Inc maintains a membership database of addresses and relevant details. It is a member’s responsibility to notify the Membership Secretary of changes to these details. Up to date records permit the easy dissemination of notices and material as well as maintaining an accurate membership directory, which is published on the AANZPA’s website for members only.
Ordinary Membership is open to practitioners who hold a current practice certificate issued by the AANZPA Inc Board of Examiners on payment of a fee. Ordinary Members are eligible to be nominated and elected to the AANZPA Executive and to vote at the AGM.
Associate Membership is open to those who have a demonstrated commitment to the Association and its goals and principles through undertaking ongoing training with an AANZPA accredited Training Institute or Campus for at least 6 months. An Associate member will have a current Training Agreement with an AANZPA accredited psychodrama Training Institute or Campus and get supervision when applying the psychodrama method. Your application must be accompanied by your sponsor’s letter which is completed on-line by an Ordinary or Distinguished Member who is involved in your training. This will be followed by payment of the relevant membership fee. Associate Membership is a requirement for advanced trainees. Associate Members are not eligible to stand for the Executive Committee of AANZPA Inc. or vote at general meetings. In all other matters they have the rights and responsibilities of Ordinary Members.
An Associate member of AANZPA who no longer has a Training Agreement with an AANZPA accredited psychodrama Training Institute or Campus is designated an Affiliate Associate member. Such members subscribe to AANZPA's code of ethics but are not bound by them. This category of membership has been created for Associate members who are no longer participating in on-going training with a Training Institute or Campus or taking a break from training. Affiliate Associate membership is only available to those who have already been an Associate member. When an Affiliate Associate Member has a new Training Agreement they may apply to be designated an Associate member.
Other Membership Categories
AANZPA may also appoint Ordinary Members as Distinguished Members. Any Ordinary Member may apply to the Executive Committee to become a Distinguished Member of the Association and the Executive Committee may in its absolute discretion admit an Ordinary member of the Association to be a Distinguished Member of the Association.
Honorary Distinguished Member
The Association may, upon the recommendation of the Executive Committee, admit any person (whether an ordinary member or not) to be an Honorary Distinguished Member of the Association.
The category of Non-Practicing member
may also be made available to Ordinary Members in certain circumstances such as retirement from practice.
President’s Mailing List
President’s Mailing List is available to people who are not eligible for membership to AANZPA Inc and who wish to be assured of receiving publications and notices of events. These people may include those with overseas qualifications who are resident in Australia or Aotearoa New Zealand and waiting for certification by AANZPA Inc, international applicants, professional associations and other interested professional people.
Application for Membership
To apply for Membership or to be listed on the President’s Mailing List, please email the AANZPA Membership Administrator firstname.lastname@example.org. Membership Fee information is available.
AANZPA Membership Fee
Ordinary Membership $275.00
Associate Membership $140.00
Affiliate Associate Membership $140.00
President's Mailing List $77.00
A Pro rata fee applies to new Associate members who join part way through the membership year.
July to January (Pre Conference) $140.00 (Full Fee)
January to June (Post Conference) Discounted rate $70.00