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Acts of Witness: Performance as a Therapeutic Act

A 14-Week Journey of Self Discovery:
through Autobiographical Therapeutic Performance


Mondays, 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm
September 11th to December 11th, 2017

Perform Your Story for an Invited Audience of your Choosing
Culminating Performance at Stage Werx in San Francisco
on December 9th and 10th, 2017

Weekly 3-hour group

14 Sessions + Weekend Performance
Space Limited-8 Participants Maximum!

Want to know how it works?

Click on this link to read Armand Volkas’s Chapter on
Autobiographical Therapeutic Performance

Fee for weekly 15 session group is $995
Participants will also share in the cost of theatre rental, technical rehearsal and lighting technician.
Weekly Workshop Cost Averages $77 per week

In addition to the group process, work individually with a trained Acts of Witness Therapist / Director who will help you shape your theatre piece—fee negotiable based on need and budget


Living Arts Counseling Center
1265 65th Street
Emeryville, CA


What is Autobiographical Therapeutic Performance?

Acts of Witness is a form of performance that gives you the opportunity to uncover and transform self-defeating “life scripts”. Through acting, improvisation and playwriting techniques, you will develop the skills to explore formative experiences, and spoken and unspoken toxic messages you received from family, society and life traumas. With support, you will identify and refine therapeutic goals, reclaim lost aspects of your “Self”, and write new, life-affirming, narratives to guide your path.

This 15-week process will include supportive group exploration and personal work.  You will:

  • Take courageous emotional risks in a safe, supportive environment
  • Embark on your own “Hero’s Journey” moving through the phases of a transformative therapeutic process
  • Work through the crisis of “re-decision” to reclaim autonomy over your life

Use theatre to help you recreate your life as a living, breathing work of art!


Armand Volkas, MFT, RDT/BCT & Maude Davis Ph.D.(c)

For more information or to schedule an interview contact:
Armand Volkas at:

(510) 595-5500, Ext. 11

Living Arts Counseling Center
1265 65th Street
Emeryville, CA
(510) 595-5500, Ext 11

 About the Facilitators:

armand-photo-150x188Armand Volkas is a psychotherapist and Registered Drama Therapist in private practice and Clinical Director of the Living Arts Counseling Center in Emeryville, California, where he directs a training program for students, interns and therapists who want to integrate drama therapy into their practice. Drama Therapy uses acting improvisation and psychodrama as therapeutic tools. He is a Board Certified Trainer in this discipline with The North American Association for Drama Therapy. In addition, Armand is Associate Professor in the Counseling Psychology Program at California Institute of Integral Studies and Adjunct Professor at John F. Kennedy University. He has developed innovative programs using drama therapy and expressive arts therapy for social change, intercultural conflict transformation and peacebuilding.

Armand Volkas directs Healing the Wounds of History, a therapeutic approach in which theatre techniques are used to work with generational trauma and groups of participants from two cultures with a common legacy of violent conflict and historical trauma. Healing the Wounds of History has received international recognition for its work in bringing together polarized groups: Germans and Jews; Palestinians and Israelis; Japanese, Chinese and Koreans; Armenians and Turks; African-Americans and European-Americans, to name a few.

Armand is also Artistic Director of The Living Arts Playback Theatre Ensemble. Playback Theatre transforms personal stories told by audience members into theatre pieces on the spot using movement, ritual, music and spoken improvisation. Sometimes a story becomes myth, sometimes a realistic enactment: some stories are tragic; others are funny or illuminating. The ensemble is in now in its 28th year of existence.

At the heart of Armand’s work is a profound respect for the power of personal story to build bridges between people and cultures.

Maude Davis, Ph.D.(c)

“Fate confronts [us] like an intricate labyrinth all too rich in possibilities, and yet of all these possibilities, only one is [our] own right way.” — CG Jung

Sometimes, when we hear the call of fate, we listen with an inner ear for quiet whispers of the soul. This call arrives in many forms — it can be a traumatic experience or relationship, a feeling of restlessness or depression, a health problem or simply an unexplainable desire to grasp the mystery of life. My approach to Autobiographical Therapeutic Performance brings together Jungian analysis with expressive arts therapy. I offer a safe place for you to recognize your unique identity. In our work together, we will follow the varied threads of your story so that you can weave and shape your own destiny. My approach uses both verbal and non-verbal methods, encouraging spontaneity and the healing influence of the imagination. These sensorial processes lead to an aesthetic and spiritual understanding of soul.

My academic and professional background is diverse. After conservatory theater training at the East 15 Acting School in London England I spent many years in New York City working as a performer, director, and teacher. Later I earned an interdisciplinary Master’s Degree in Psychology and the Performing Arts with a focus on the Feminine Principle at SUNY/ Empire State College. I am a doctoral candidate in Expressive Arts Therapy at European Graduate School. This broad and rich background informs my analytical training at the CG Jung Institute in Zurich. Currently, a trainee at the Living Arts Counseling Center, I am supervised by Armand Volkas, MFT RDT/BCT (MFC #28789).

Languages: English (fluent), Spanish (basic)

One must still have chaos within oneself to give birth to a dancing star.” — Nietzsche


October 9 @ 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)
Weekly on the same day until December 4, 2017


October 9
6:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Event Category:


Armand Volkas
(510) 595-5500, Ext 11


Living Arts Counseling Center-Emeryville
1265 65th Street
Emeryville, CA 94608 United States
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