An international Seminar on Fairy-tale therapy

An international Seminar on Fairy-tale therapy

March 2015

„Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale”

Hans Christian Andersen

Storytelling is one of the most ancient and beautiful traditions. It allows ‘travelling with one’s mind’ and opens up new worlds. It has great therapeutic potential: it can change our moods; develop our imagination; deepen our understanding of everyday life; and help us control or face our emotions. The benefits of stories and tales are numerous, dating back millennia: even in the time of Pharaoh Rameses the library was called ‘the house of healing for the soul.’

The First International Seminar on Fairy-tale Therapy that took place in Sintra bewteen 10 and 13 March brought together specialists, academics, therapists, storytellers and other enthusiasts of fairy-tales and storytelling and their therapeutic and healing potential.

The importance of stories and tales is more and more understood, worked with and applied. This was witnessed and also demonstrated during the seminar. It is a tool within our reach and can be present in our daily routine.


Sintra became the stage for exchanging experiences, ideas, points of view and inspiration. The atmosphere created was very unique and very special, allowing us to benefit from enriching lectures, presentations, workshops and memorable musical and cultural moments.

The seminar had an institutional support and patronage of the Institute for the Study and Tradition of Nova University of Lisbon and National Center of Culture and honorary participation of H.E. the Ambassador of Denmark to Portugal, Michael Suhr.

We are already looking forward to meeting all of you next year in Sintra!


‘The Seminar was both inspiring-meeting colleagues-and also meeting people with the same interests’.

Gerdi Tuender, Dramatherapist, the Netherlands


‘A meeting in which we received the cultural wealth of countries such as Denmark, Israel, USA, Canada and Poland, a gathering of very interesting therapeutic testimonials in a truly magical environment. The exchange of experiences was very strong and I created friendships for life, which only happens when we feel safe and comfortable, in the atmosphere very successfully created by Moonluza. I loved the experience and I look forward to the next one with great joy.’

Katia Leonardo, Singer, Voice Therapist, Portugal    


‘The conference was a fruitfull multidisciplinary event bringing together researchers and practitioners from different fields that offered new perspectives. It has the scope to become first in a series…’

Lisa Gjedde, Aalborg University, Denmark


‘The Folk Tale belongs neither to the author nor to the sponsors, but to the people. Based on this statement we were able to enjoy an innovative subject in a magical environment as Sintra always is. The workshops were quite helpful and enlightening. In a very consice and easy to follow approach, we have acknowledged the use of traditional literature as a different strategy to manage inner conflicts.’

Ana de Neves Rodrigues, Nova University of Lisbon, Portugal


‘It was an unusual conference, rich, intimate, inspiring. We have never discussed fairy-tales in such a fairy-tale like atmosphere.’

Rachel and Gabriel Zoran, University of Haifa, Israel


‘The conference was a wonderful experience on all levels – very well organized, intimate and inspiring. I am grateful for all the beautiful exchanges and new friendships. Thank you!’

Yehudit Silverman, Professor and Chair in the Creative Arts Therapies Department of Concordia University, Montreal, Canada


‘The International Seminar on Fairy-tale Therapy was beautifully situated in Sintra. It was a rewarding occasion where fairy tales and storytelling were discussed in an interdisciplinary forum in which both scholarly and therapeutic approaches were represented and inspired each other.’

Jacob Bøggild, Hans Christian Andersen Center, University of Southern Denmark


‘The therapeutic and performative power of word, its implicit capacity to move the reader/listener from an interior place to another (always upwards, as well noticed Bruno Bettelheim), depends a lot on the authenticity and symbolic adhesion of this reader/listener at the time and circumstances artificially recreated where the word of the tales is resumed. The two workshops held by Gerdi Tuender (the Netherlands) and Shai Karta Schwarz (Israel), where the stories of ‘The Princess and the Pea’ (Andersen) and respectively ‘ The Frog Prince’ (Borthers Grimm) were recounted, were, I think, unforgettable moments for the whole group.

Carla Maia de Almeida, Writer, Translator, Jornalist, Portugal


The Seminar was a very important occasion for the exchange of knowledge and experience on Therapeutical Storytelling. I could sparkle new ideas in the life meeting with great scholars and practitioners on this topic.’

Michał Malinowski, Custodian of Museum of Tales and stories, Poland


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