about acting up

Anne Deveson(2003) once described resilience as “a cloak of many colours”. Every person owns a unique cloak. When placed together, the cloaks form a beautiful tapestry of combined strength and resilience. I believe that every person is strong, and even stronger when we stand together. It is this support that empowers the emotionally vulnerable to take the first step towards healing. To companion and stand with them without judgement is, to me, the cornerstone of any therapeutic progress. Thus, at Acting Up, we believe that no young person is ‘beyond hope’. Given the right emotional tools and a renewed meaning in life, they can be empowered to create waves of change in society.

My passion for theatre and the arts led me to wonder if I could use these artistic platforms as a way to engage the emotionally vulnerable in a safe way. Could expression without a focus on words reach them in a way conventional therapy could not? After obtaining my Masters in Experiential and Creative Arts Therapy from the MIECAT Institute in Melbourne, I embarked on this road less travelled, reaching out to emotionally vulnerable youth through a world of dance, music, dramatics and visual art.

 And what a ride it’s been. After 10 years of working with youth in institutional and school settings, I am confident that our programmes have been honed to reach even the most ‘impossible’ of cases. Now, our youth beneficiaries continue our story by learning to be facilitators themselves; living testaments to emotional healing. 

I could go on and on about my experience and credentials (as most websites do). Instead, I shall leave you with a quote from one of our youth beneficiaries, “Ron”:

“Being silent is not being strong. It takes courage to speak, to utter the first word. To say, ‘please help’. THAT is STRENGTH”

Thank you for dropping by, and do drop me a line. 

Marissa Teo (AThR)

Founder, Therapist