There is Hope.
After completing my Masters degrees in Counseling and Behavior Management and in Criminology and while searching for a supervisor for my PhD project into using therapeutic drama practices with young people with complex trauma, I found myself delving into developmental trauma trainings with the Australian Childhood Foundation through which I found Sensorimotor psychotherapy, the somatic child therapy of Maggie Kline in her intensive program, "Trauma Through A Child's eyes" and other longer post graduate trainings of Somatic Experiencing™. Organic Intelligence™ Somatic practice trainings with Kathy Kain and the Psycho-biological attachment couples and family therapy and the most recent gift embodied recovery training through the embodied recovery institute. The gifts of these modalities are many, and the work itself can best be described as a process of re-organizing and re-regulating the nervous system.
Re-regulation results in feeling better without having “to do” things to feel better.
I bring this regulatory work into into my private practice where I have the honor of working with the children, teens, young adults, individuals, their families and couples. Together we engage in therapeutic play, drama therapy, somatic touch work, body awareness, mindfulness, sensory integration, attachment play and dialogue.
Play is a child’s most natural way of communicating.
My career started working with children as a child in youth theatre in Brisbane and then as a child drama practitioner and Theatre director integrating the work of Peter Slade (the Sesame technique) and the improvisational work of Keith Johnstone to create alive rehearsal and workshops techniques for actors and young people. I then trained in the 1980's at Drama School in Victoria where I learned specialist voice training, improvisational skills and mask work. Using these skills we explored the use of play in the creation of play scripts and in the investigation of text using voice, improvisation, image and movement. Further training and performance work on leaving University, in mindfulness clowning and Integration dancing, inspired me to set up a company "Uralla Little Theatre" for young people where I focused as much on them reaching their personal potential as their acting potential. The work produced in that company was inspirational with the young people skillfully and easefully bringing their creativity, humor, grace and play to richly embodied performances. In their lives beyond the studio each one of them stepped out of their comfort zones and confidently grasped new opportunities and effortlessly overcame old fears. With echoes of that early practice but now richly underpinned by the reorganizing principals of SE, OI and somatic touch practice, children (and adults) in my practice today, play their way to healing as they reclaim their power and embrace their curiosity and love.
Child & Family Therapy
For Actors and Performers
I have been working with actors all my life, either training them or working alongside of them. After training as a director in Victoria and while training in sensorimotor psychotherapy I began to synthesize my years of embodied theatre practice into a single way to work with actors. I built on this during a six month intensive training with Queensland Shakespeare Ensemble in 2017 during which time I trained in the work of Augusto Boal, "theatre of the oppressed", brushed up on my voice skills with formal classes and in warm-ups and learned new ways to apply old skills. Using the underpinnings of my training in Somatic experiencing I began to have stunning results as I integrated this work into my private practice work with women and toddlers, into group practice with refugee toddlers and now as a somatic play therapist working with children who are in the child protection system. I have also gone on to refine the program to offer artists a process that integrates it with the work of Michael Chekhov and the voice work of Cecily Berry, to offer a unique process for writing and working with and through, songs, speeches and characters while at the same time learning to regulate and heal their nervous systems, their bodies and minds.
The Journey Continues...
After graduating from my Master Programs at Bond University in 2010, I worked predominantly with women and young people, first at Sisters Inside and for a time with RAQ. During this period I developed and successfully implemented a multidisciplinary embodied approach to working in groups with woman and young people suffering from developmental trauma, complex PTSD, BPD, DID, chronic depression and anxiety. The wondrous healing in these workshops was encouraging. This period of time was also a stunning opportunity to offer the extraordinary healing of SE and Organic Intelligence to incarcerated women and criminalized young people. Enabling people who have never had the opportunity to have a trusting therapeutic relationship and explore an embodied, neuroscientifically sound therapeutic approach to healing, and watching them flourish in that oppressive environment has been one of the greatest achievements of my life and work. I am now able to offer that same healing to my clients in private practice in Brisbane where I work with adults and children using unique elements of my skills and trainings to bring healing and success to them at all levels of their lives.
I live in Wynnum with my son Yuri who has Autism and who is my greatest teacher and our dogs Raffles and Frodo.
Let’s connect and find a new path to healing....