The Sesame Approach

At the heart of the Sesame Approach is a metaphor. Just like the ancient story that uses the phrase 'Open Sesame' to open the cave door and reveal treasure, the Sesame Approach uses drama and movement as powerful resources to promote healing and change in people.

It is a non-confrontational therapy, based in the knowledge that difficulties are resolved indirectly or obliquely, through metaphor and using an inner language that is initially non-verbal. This symbol or image language is expressed through the use of movement, drama, touch, story enactment, improvisation, and use of voice, explored in a safe and playful environment.


Experiencing and embodying an inner image through movement, taking on a role in a story, or enacting a character which is new or in contrast to the everyday way of dealing with life, are each ways that Sesame uses to work with people. The meaning of what is expressed may take time to be integrated and understood.

Talking forms an important part of a Sesame session, but it is not the job of the Drama and Movement Therapist to interpret the client's symbolic, inner material in the session. It is their role to draw this material out and amplify it so that, over time, it begins to become less unfamiliar and can be considered. Once an idea, a memory, a feeling or a thought is conscious, there is more choice about what can be done with it. Reactions and behaviour can gradually be understood and so changed.

The approach is based on theories of Carl Jung's psychology of the unconscious, Rudolph Laban's Art of Movement, Peter Slade's work in children's play and Marian Lindkvist's non-verbal language of Movement-with-touch-and-sound. The core principle of the work is to stay with the inner symbol until its wisdom can be integrated and applied to making new healthy life choices.