The following is an outline to a presentation given at the Idaho Counselor Association Annual Conference, Developing our Creativity as Counselors -- Put Your Signature on the World, January 26-27, 2007. PDF and Word versions are also available.
Moreno’s Early Encounter with Creativity
Early on Moreno was struck by the creativity and spontaneity of children and this intrigue is at the core of Psychodrama, the approach he developed. In his (Moreno 1983, pp. 3 - 4), “The Theatre of Spontaneity,” in modified form in “Preludes to the Sociometric Movement” (1953, xvii-xix), and in his autobiography (Moreno, 1989, pp. 37-39), he identifies these experiences as playing a central role in his development of his approach, theories, and methods. He refers to "suffering’ from an idée fixe, a French term for a mild obsession, not so much in the pathological sense, but rather more as a guiding vision” (Blatner, 1996b, p. 155). In his autobiography he states (Moreno, 1989),
Moreno’s Canon of Creativity and Related Concepts
Note. From “Who Shall Survive? Foundations of Sociometry, Group
Psychotherapy, and Sociodrama (1st Student Edition)” (p.18), by
J. L. Moreno, 1993, McLean, VA: Royal. Copyright 1993 by the American
Society of Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama. Reproduced and adapted
Spontaneity is an unconservable energy. Energy in terms of cultural conserves can be saved and used at different points in time. Spontaneity in unconservable. “One either is spontaneous at a given moment or one is not” (Moreno, 1993, p. 19). “Spontaneity has the capacity for freshness, originality, and usefulness” (Hale, 1981, p. 6). Spontaneity is not mere impulsively. Moreno (1966, p.20) identified it as being pathological, stereotyped, or true.
action therapy, psychodrama, was designed to increase spontaneity and
The purpose of warming up in psychodrama is to enhance spontaneity and to prepare for a creative enactment. Blatner (1996a, p. 43) identifies four preconditions for spontaneous behavior in this regard:
I have described my own warm-up for conducting psychodramatic enactments elsewhere, including the warm up of the director, the warm up of the group and various effective exercises (Pramann, 2005). In addition, I have edited and posted a list of warm up ideas for children and adolescents (Pramann, 2002).
Group warm up – Nudge your neighbor, five minutes each –
in groups of two identify a time in the past in which you felt particularly
creative. What was happening? What was happening internally for you?
What was the result?
Creativity in a Psychodramatic Enactment
from a live and unrehearsed psychodramatic enactment. For the purpose
and objectives of the presentation I will stop amidst the process to
comment on the creative element at various points or have someone act
as recorder and at the end of the drama go back and comment on my creative
processes at various points.
Creativity with Other Approaches and Types of Intervention
Discussion with the audience.
Blatner, A. (1996a). Acting in: Practical applications of psychodramatic methods (3rd ed.). New York: Springer.
Blatner, A. (1996b). Moreno's "idee fixe." Journal of Group Psychotherapy, Psychodrama & Sociometry, 48(4), 155-158. Retrieved November 24, 2005, from Adam Blatner’s Website: http://www.blatner.com/adam/pdntbk/ideefixe.htm
A.E. (1981). Conducting clinical sociometric explorations: A manual
for psychodramatists and sociometrists. Roanoke, VA: Royal.
Moreno, J.L. (1983). The theatre of spontaneity (3rd. ed.). Amber, PA: Beacon House.
Moreno, J.L. (1989). The autobiography of J.L. Moreno, M.D. (edited by J.D. Moreno). Journal of group therapy, psychodrama, and sociometry, 42 (1), 3-52.
Moreno, J.L. (1993). Who shall survive? Foundations of sociometry, group psychotherapy, and sociodrama (1st Student Edition) (A. E. Hale, Ed.). McLean, VA: Royal.
Pramann, 2002, Peter Rowan's Warm-Ups and Techniques be to be Used with Children and Adolescents. Retrieved January 22, 2007, from http://www.ssccc.com/articles.htm
R. (2005). Warm Ups for Your Back Pocket. Retrieved January 22, 2007,
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