Commonality of Emotional Trauma in Performing Arts: Implications for Training Programs

Dana C. Branson, Monica Bixby Radu
2020 Journal of Education and Human Development (New York)  
This article examines Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) scores among university performing arts students, the role of trauma as a muse and creative outlet, and attraction to the performing arts as a result of experienced trauma. Descriptive and Chi Square analysis reveal significant concentrations of ACE scores were discovered in 3 of the 10 ACE categories for performing arts majors, specifically psychological abuse, emotional neglect, and having a family member with mental illness.
more » ... illness. Additionally, performing arts students (n = 95) had a higher total average ACE score compared to other majors (n = 322). Research indicates a strong correlation between number of ACE scores and negative physical and psychological outcomes in adults (Felitti et al., 1998) . Numerous methods centered on difficult emotions are employed to assist performing artists in honing their craft, physically, cognitively, and psychologically; thereby creating a complex relationship between creative inspiration from past traumatic events and destructive force to the whole person. These dynamics result in implications for performing arts preparatory programs, such as how to address these issues in their curriculum for holistic education and development of one's artistic range and abilities.
doi:10.15640/jehd.v9n4a12 fatcat:ivivsyyyyvghfmokw76qk24rle