A center for movement, music and dance-based arts supporting healing and self-expression.
The salient element that informs all aspects of my work is dance. For me, the word dance has come to symbolize all nonverbal expression which has the potential to be communicative. The goal of my work – from individual psychotherapy sessions and parent – infant/child counseling to my wellness creative dance programming – is to help the participants learn how their nonverbal actions accompany and add meaning to their verbalizations. Understanding the role movements and gestures play in our interactions facilitates greater awareness of self and others.
My work is very much influenced by my own explorations of dance in its entirety – as a dancer of traditional, modern, improvisational and authentic movement dance forms; as an educator teaching others to find their own dance within; and as a Laban Movement Analyst focusing on using a notation system that codes and describes qualities of movement. For me, both the role of observer and dancer are active roles. As an observer of dance, I am always moved by its powerful ability to evoke personal emotional expression. As a dancer, I experience the embodiment of the deepest roots of emotion through movement and gesture. Working from this focus, I look at each individual's nonverbal actions as choreography that become personal movement signatures. I regard interactions between people as spontaneous improvisations.
Dancing Dialogue dance/movement therapy and all wellness programs come from the philosophy that the body, mind, and emotions are integrated. I believe our moving bodies tell stories which speak about our experiences. As a dance/movement therapist I pay keen attention to subtle nonverbal cues and the subtleties of body experience, through a deep listening process involving kinesthetic empathy. I think about the body through the experiences of the body and view the body and movement as a metaphor of self. I believe all actions have the potential to be communicative.
Dance/movement therapy activities support an individual along the path of personal wellness and self-discovery by providing activities, which enable the exploration of the link between one's body, mind and emotions through creative explorations. Participants will learn about the nonverbal expressiveness of their actions; how their personal movement style influences their everyday functioning both emotionally and physically; and the continuum created by the physical embodiment of emotional stress observable in their posture, breath and muscular tension patterns.
Dance and movement explorations stimulated by the participant’s own creativity support how to listen deeply to the messages in one’s body both through stillness and movement. Activities also include exploring the natural ways our bodies are meant to move following anatomical and kinesiological principles creating an increase in fluidity, better balance, coordination and inner calm. Personal skills are developed to better manage every day tensions and anxieties while experiencing the joy of movement and improved fitness.
What is Dance/Movement Psychotherapy?
Dance/movement therapy is a New York State licensed form of treatment recognized as a practice within Creative Arts Therapy (LCAT). Dance/movement therapy is an experiential form of psychotherapy that utilizes nonverbal movement observation, dance, music, play, multi-sensory and relaxation/meditative techniques for the assessment and intervention for all ages.
Dance/movement therapists have at least a Masters level degree training and are required to have 2 years of supervised training before they are able to conduct a private practice. The national dance/movement therapy association provides board certification to their senior dance/movement therapists (BC-DMT). In New York State all trained dance/movement therapists must now also have the credential of Licensed Creative Arts Therapist (LCAT). More information about training and dance/movement therapy are available at the national website www.adta.org.
Offered For infants, children, teens, and adults
Using dance, music, and embodied lyrical mindfulness activities these programs support and enhance each individual's natural curiosity and creativity leading to personal self awareness, building confidence, independence, and a positive self-image and body-image.
Dancing Dialogue wellness classes explore the concept that our bodies tell stories that speak of our experiences, dreams and fantasies, highlighting a multi-cultural use of stories, storytelling, art and art making, through self-expressive dance, music & rhythm. Embodied Parenting, BabyMoves BabyCues, and Creative Dance classes offer fun ways to dance and play with your baby and toddler to support your child's growth and your parenting.
- Stimulate the love of learning and discovery while enhancing skills
- Grow physically, mentally, emotionally and socially
- Support diversity of learning styles, abilities and individuality
- Build a sense of respect and community through sharing and friendship
- Experience the joys and wonders of dancing and all the arts
- Stimulate fun, laughter and exuberance
Children Wellness Programs
The younger children will work on creating simple choreographs through their own dance & movement self-discoveries to music and other arts stimuli, while the older children will develop more complex dances on their own and with partners, with the added structure of yoga and modern dance.
Adult Wellness Programs
Adult Wellness classes provide inner focused explorations through movement mediation and authentic movement as well as classes for the pregnant mother-to-be.
Embodied Parenting for Caregiver & Baby
Dance - movement - music - story - play - socialize
Enhance your child’s mind - body - self - natural curiosity - creativity- confidence
Stimulate a love of learning through discovery.
Class activities are based on the latest infant and child development research, providing parent/caregiver support while learning fun ways to engage with your child.
Suzi Tortora's Dancing Dialogue classes offer fun ways to dance and play with your baby and toddler to support your child's growth and your parenting.
Supported by numerous photos from her work with parents and infants all over the world, Dr. Tortora explains the concept of "embodied parenting." Drawing from interpersonal neurobiology and dance/movement therapy, she shares why attuned nonverbal communication between parent and child is crucial to infant mental health and how dancing is needed in this world now more than ever.