Our Values for Teaching and Everyday School Life

Cooperation in the school

Our course and in particular our curricula encourage and require cooperation between all parties involved (students, lecturers, school management). We believe that cooperation between people with different levels of knowledge (lecturers/students), different fields of knowledge and different roles is enriching and has a multiplicative effect on all involved.

Transparency for successful cooperation within the course

We are transparent because we believe….

  • that transparency fosters trust and clarity among all parties involved:, students, teachers and school management.
  • that transparency creates an atmosphere for learning and creativity.
  • that transparency calls on all participants to be accurate and authentic.

The schools transparency towards the public

We are committed to transparency

  • between the school and the public.
    between the school management and the employers.
    between the school/school management and the authorities.

we are committed to transparency

  • between the school and the public.
  • between the school and the authorities.
  • between the school management and the employers.

The Faculty

Christel Büche

Dance Pedagogue/Certified Dance Movement Therapist BTD/Cert. KMP

Klaus Bally

Specialist for General Medicine FMH
University Centre for Family Medicine of both Basel | uniham-bb
Cantonal Hospital Baselland

Katrin Brandner

Supervisor, Coach and Social Therapist

Michaela Noseck-Licul

Mag. Dr. phil. Cultural Anthropologist / Medical Anthropologist, Lecturer for ethics in health professions

Tina Mantel

Prof. ZFH Choreographer, Dancer, MA in Dance Science, Dance Pedagogue, Coach

Nunzia Beltrametti-Tirelli

SDCS Practical Choreologist, Dance Movement Therapist, CMA Certified Movement Analyst, Independent Dancer and Choreographer

Ariane Konrad

Philosopher M.A., Dance Movement Therapist DGT
Trauma Therapist NARM® Practitioner

Esther Böhlcke

Gestalt Sociotherapist, Movement Pedagogue Laura Sheleen

Helen Payne

Professor of Psychotherapy, Dance/movement therapist (BC-DMT), Somatic Psychologist (PhD), Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC), Approved Clinical Supervisor (ACS)

Christine Caldwell

PhD, Somatic Psychology. Professor

Marieke Delonnay

Certified Laban Movement Analyst, accredited Dance and Movement Therapist, and accredited Somatic Movement Practitioner

Joachim Küchenhoff

Prof. Dr. med. Psychiatrist/ Psychotherapist

Robyn Flaum Cruz

PhD, Professor, Division of Expressive Therapies, PhD Program, Lesley University, Boston, MA

Michael Gerfin

Prof. Dr., Professor for Economics, University of Bern

Mirsada Turina

Expert in Finance and Accounting

Anina Kuoni

Dr. iur., specialist lawyer SAV labour law

Brigitte Züger

Head of School, Dance Movement Therapist, Swiss Dioloma Kunsttherapie/Dance Movement Therapy

Dipl.Psych. Birgit Milz

Federally recognized psychotherapist
Course in Dance / Movement Therapy (Ute Lang/Kedzie Penfield,Berlin)
Diploma in Analytical Psychology C.G.Jung Institute Zurich
EMDR Supervisor (EMDR Europe)
Various further trainings in psychotraumatology, attachment theory and dissociative disorders

School Management

Brigitte Züger

Integr. and  clin. Dance Movement Therapist, Body Therapist FPI , Arts Therapist Movement and Dance Therapy  (ED), Dance Movement Psychotherapist

Born in Basel in 1960, I went through 12 years of school there. Due to my experience as a movement teacher and dancer, I experienced that movement and dance also have far-reaching effects on the psyche. This led me to dance therapy. Since 1994 I have been an Integrative Dance and Movement Therapist, since 1012 a Dance Movement Psychotherapist. In 2014 I passed the Federal Higher Examination for Complementary Therapy, in 2016 the Federal Higher Examination for Art Therapy Movement and Dance Therapy.

My path led me in 1994 to Reha Rheinfelden, where I was given the task of setting up a dance therapy department and creating therapy concepts. From 2000 to 2010 I was given the management of the Creative Therapy / Music and Dance Department. During this time the clinic went through the process of quality review. This allowed me to think broadly about the quality control of dance therapy. In this context, I conceptualized the treatment strategies for the different disease groups and systematized the treatment protocol and reporting. In 2012 I left the clinic. In the whole time since 1994 until now I still lead and lead my
private office for Dance Movement Therapy in Basel.

I am married and have 4 adult patchwork children

Vitae  Brigitte Züger


Here you can find our newsletters. They come irregularly due to our other tasks

Aug 21 How a Dance Movement Therapy concept is born

Dear Reader

Here is an example of how I work out dance therapy issues:

As a Dance Movement Therapist I have the challenge to describe my offer “close to the people and their experience” and from the perspective of activating resources. For me this means that I let myself be touched or inspired by a (current) theme. Through reflection and by feeling my way into the theme, ideas and possibilities for the Dance Movement Therapeutic implementation of the theme emerge. I consider whether depth-psychological factors of dance therapy make sense for this, or whether it is more about gaining self-competence. To what extent should the repertoire of movement, which has an expressive effect, be expanded? What kind of relationship would be helpful for the clients and strengthen their self-confidence?
We call this process “concept development”. In ZOE SCHOOL we put a lot of emphasis on this, because only if a dance therapist is able to adapt his/her offer to the topics of the culture, the social topics and currents, his/her work remains current and useful.

That’s exactly what I did recently when I found an article on Languishing. It refers to the long-term effects of covid, that is, long covid. When I read the article, I was not only amazed but really pleased: Finally an article that does not “psychiatrize” or “pathologize” a disturbing element of the psyche, but describes and deals with it in a human-oriented and empathic way. I could do a lot with this from a Dance Movement Therapeutic point of view, because Languishing is largely about withheld emotions, which, from my experience, easily come into flow with movement and movement expression. Which of YOUR personal issues would you like to work on in dance therapy?

Many Greetings Brigitte Züger, director ZOE SCHOOL OF DANCE MOVEMENT THERAPY, Basel

Sept 21 What we offer at ZOE SCHOOL

Dear Reader

We are now in the process of expanding the courses offered under the ZOE SCHOOL umbrella. Thus, we now offer different course formats: the Specialized Continuing Education Courses, the Crash Courses and the Associated Courses for students at ZOE SCHOOL.

Specialized Continuing Education courses are a combination of courses from the curriculum and last approximately 200 to 400 hours. They address people who are already working as dance therapists or educators, psychologists, psychotherapists or other helping professionals who want to integrate dance therapy aspects into their work.

If you want to do the whole course at a later date, we will credit you for part of the courses you have taken in the Specialized Continuing Education. The duration is two years.

The crash courses are short forms of the existing courses in the course and last between 10 and 20 hours. You will gain insight and develop skills from the courses in the course in a short period of time.

Associate courses are courses offered by the Y Harkness Center for Dance Movement Therapy in New York. They are online courses on specific topics such as dance therapy with the elderly or with dementia, dance therapy and social change, dance therapy and neurobiology, a critical review, etc. These courses are available to ZOE SCHOOL students as free electives with an expense fee.

In addition, two info videos on courses or topics in the course have now been created. You can find them here on our website.

If you want to start studying Art Therapy Movement and Dance Therapy with us at ZOE SCHOOL, remember that the entrance exams will only be held on October 9, 21, November 27, 21 and January 15, 22. We need the dossier for admission at least 10 days before these dates. More info and explanation brochure for admission can be found here.

The dates for the information evenings can be found here,

Many Greetings Brigitte Züger, director ZOE SCHOOL OF DANCE MOVEMENT THERAPY, Basel

Oct/Nov 21 Spirituality in Dance Movement Therapy

Dear Reader

I am often asked what place spirituality has in the course of ZOE SCHOOL FOR DANCE MOVEMENT THERPY. This is a very good and also important question. First a statement from me personally: Spirituality is resident as a vibration in each of our cells, so it is deeply rooted in our being. In this newsletter I would like to speak primarily of spiritual attitude and spiritual experience.

From my point of view spirituality does not know any dualization e.g. of body and mind/spirituality: a spiritual attitude overcomes this and knows neither judgements nor condemnations. This spiritual attitude promotes the deep experience and insight into things in themselves or the experiential knowledge of the essence of things. From this flows the experience of “more than what our external senses can grasp.” This awakens intuition and inner wisdom and leads into the absolute presence of all that is.

In the ZOE SCHOOL you learn to observe your movement and subsequently the movement of your clientele as pure movement, to perceive it and to grasp it without judgement or condemnation. As you become familiar with this during the course, you will automatically approach the essence of experience and the “more than what our outer senses can grasp”, which corresponds to a spiritual attitude. We also call this “the therapeutic intuition”.

Here is another way of looking at the connection between dance therapy and spirituality: The body basically knows no duality. It expresses what is, whether pleasant, unpleasant, desired or undesired. “Pleasant”, “unpleasant”, “desired” or “undesired” originates from our dualizing interpretation. With each so-called negative interpretation we increasingly distance ourselves from our (body) experience, split off, create our shadows and dualize, which can lead to physical and psychological disorders.

We dance therapists therefore strive in the therapy process to dissolve this dualization by accompanying our clients on their way into the presentness of the body, of life and experience and thus into their vitality. Doesn’t this sound like a growth process of mystics and sages or of really spiritual people?

To this end, I would like to quote a poem by Marion Woodman from her book, Coming Home to Myself:

“We can swing back and forth

Between opposites indefinitely

Better to stand

On the stillpoint

At the center where all is pure motion, pure live and fulfillment in spirit.”

Both the dance therapist Anna Halprin and all the dance therapists who have developed the Authentic Movement method, also part of our curriculum, for many years, convey to us the depth of experienced movement. They have all encountered spiritual experience along the way and have found that this is the real path of healing.

So, in the course you are going on a journey that puts great emphasis on the spiritual attitude on the basis of academic-oriented knowledge. ZOE SCHOOL is also breaking new and significant ground in this regard.

Many Greetings Brigitte Züger, director ZOE SCHOOL OF DANCE MOVEMENT THERAPY, Basel

May 22 How do Students learn Dance Movement Therapy

How do our students learn?
Why does ZOE SCHOOL focus on experience-based learning?
What is experience-based learning? How does it differ from self-experience?

Dear Reader

In experience-based learning, the learning content in all movement courses is presented to you on a practical, movement-experiencing level. The presentation of the theory usually follows, after which you can compare your own experiences of the experience with the theory through guided self-reflection: What did I experience and what of my experience did I find in the theory? What of the theory was missing from my experience? In the subsequent “doing and experiencing”, the aspects experienced through the theory can then be explored and thus, in turn, be explored and integrated in movement with it. The advantage of this is that the students experience and grasp how it feels when new territory is entered, or when previously unknown things are acquired through moving experience.

Through experiential learning, both your senses and your body open up, you become awake, alive and curious. Your abilities are automatically expanded through curiosity.

There is a second way, it is called “theory-based learning”. For this, a theory is presented, which is compared with the experiences already acquired through self-reflection on one’s own actions or in life. This takes place at ZOE SCHOOL, for example, in the courses “Biography”, “Mental Hygiene” and “Psychology”: the theory invites to find personal examples to the theory and to reflect on the basis of the theory. Questions such as, “how would I look at or act on something now that I know the theory?”, or, “what insights have I gained from the theory to make my reflections and actions easier and more helpful?” are asked for self-reflection.

One study has shown that experience-based learning significantly increases enjoyment. Not only that, but experiential learning increases the capacity for (verbal and nonverbal) empathy and the emotional intelligence of the learning therapist. We must not forget that these are central skills for a (dance) therapist.

Now, what is the difference between self-reflection and self-experience? Self-reflection is self-observation and questioning from a realistic-critical perspective. This questioning extends the self-experience, as it happens in the self-experience, to the self-reflection. Except that self-reflection brings extraordinary learning effects as described in the text above.

Many Greetings Brigitte Züger, director ZOE SCHOOL OF DANCE MOVEMENT THERAPY, Basel

Nov 22 Language in Dance Movement Therapy

Dear Reader

I remember well how the medical director as my boss at that time – let’s call him Rolf – said that Dance Movement Therapy was an exclusively non-verbal therapy. I had just taken on the task of setting up a Dance Movement Therapy unit in his clinic. His statement amazed me. My mind searched for good reasons for it: Did he perhaps know that certain mystical experiences that could be evoked through dance would lose their power through language? Or did he know that physical experience has a much more lasting effect than words? Or was he simply looking for a method that could bring healing or connection to the world of his patients who had lost speech or language comprehension due to brain injury?

I had to explain to Rolf, by way of example, that Dance Movement Therapy involves conversation and that the dance therapy experience often finds its way into full consciousness with the help of the therapeutic conversation directed toward it. It is the conversation that includes the emotional content and results in opening the additional dimension of understanding experience. It is the conversation in which the words flow out of the experience and thus the interlocutors come into the common resonance or what we call “resonating with each other”. It is the harmony of understanding and being understood. The result is an understanding face, the feeling when a person’s words make us feel that the other person empathizes with us and our experience and thus understands us. It is the language of the heart, of sharing, of affirming what we have experienced – directly, without factual or informative content: shared experience that settles deeply in the memory.

How often have I experienced it as a client in the past, or as a teaching therapy candidate, and now as a Dance Movement Therapist, that talking and sharing verbally about the deepest, most intimate, and sometimes unclassifiable dance experience allows me insight, understanding, and reconnection to our deeper layers? The memory of these conversations still enables me to bring my experience at that time clearly into the present. In our training you learn the language of the heart, maybe we should use it more often, not only as Dance Movement Therapists.

Many Greetings Brigitte Züger, director ZOE SCHOOL OF DANCE MOVEMENT THERAPY, Basel

Nov 22: Die Sprache des Herzens, oder wie benützen wir Sprache, wenn es um das Erleben geht?

Interviews with Brigitte Züger

Dance Association Switzerland TVS March 22

You are a Dance Movement Therapist and have dealt with various body and movement methods in the course of your life. What fascinates you about dance and moving body and therapy work?

First of all, I would like to explain how we Dance Movement Therapists define dance: Dance is experienced movement, which gets its dynamics through emotional connection and inner attitude.

I am fascinated by how each person expresses themselves differently, even though we all have the same body structure. What fascinates me about therapy work is that on the one hand the person in movement experiences over time that the body in movement reveals deeper and deeper insights and on the other hand the person in movement realizes very quickly what is good for him or her and what is not. It fascinates me to accompany people in this: What kind of movement and experience guidance does someone need in order to get this process going? My specific Dance Movement Therapyassessments and interventions serve as a guideline for this. Since this process is unique and highly individual for each person, it requires a lot of presence, knowledge and also intuition on my part. My many years of experience are of course also very helpful….This mixture fascinates me extraordinarily and I only succeed when I truly engage with my counterpart.When this succeeds, something new, unforeseen, impressive, unexpected emerges, which is also extraordinarily fascinating.

What is Dance Movement Therapy?

There is a definition from the European Association for Dance Movement Therapy (EADMT) that suits and pleases me:

Dance therapy is the therapeutic use of movement to promote the emotional, cognitive, physical, spiritual, and social integration of the individual. Dance as body movement, creative expression and communication is the core component of Dance Movement Therapiy. Based on the fact that the mind, body, emotional state, and social interactions are interconnected, body movement simultaneously provides the means of assessment and the mode of intervention for Dance Movement Therapy.

What made you commit your life to Dance Movement Therapy? How did you get into dance?

When I was 18 years old, I realized that the only way I could become human was to be more connected to my body. So I became a gymnastics teacher because I was very fascinated by graceful movement. In this training I got in touch with modern dance, which made me become expressive and vital. It was a feeling of deep satisfaction that no words can come close to: experienced and lived vitality in all variations and more far reaching than my body limits: A call and reverberation throughout the universe. This gave me the most satisfying feeling of connectedness and upliftment. After studying dance in New York, it was clear to me, was clear to me, that I did not want to teach “dance steps” first and foremost, but to convey the vital body feeling that can be experienced through dance in all its expression. I only succeeded in this when I realized that “the soul has to dance along”.

What basic attitude underlies your therapeutic, pedagogical and artistic work?

Definitely and absolutely a humanistic basic attitude. I am grateful for that. Here is the definition of it:

Each person is unique and is seen as an individual whose body, mind and spirit are interwoven and influence each other. The creative potential of each person is recognized, captured, valued and supported. In doing so, the individual is granted and also expected to have the ability to grant the same rights to others and to engage in discourse about them.

The humanistic view considers man embedded in an ecological and social environment with which he can resonate. He has a right to freedom as well as the right and responsibility to self-determination. This view of the human being emphasizes the interaction of inner processes and the resonance to external conditions. For this reason we also consider the human being as a holistic being.

This year, the theme of dance and emotions accompanies us. Can you tell us from a Dance Movement Therapy perspective what emotions are, what function they have in our lives and what role they play in Dance Movement Therapy?

Emotions are so-called “markers.” They show us how we feel and give us information about how we should behave: Fear shows us that we have to be careful. Joy shows us that we are in a good place with all the circumstances around us. Anger is the force that allows us to take back our own space, etc.

Association Care January 2023

E-books to download

Here you will find thoughts from the (professional) everyday life

Assistant to the school management

Franziska Viscardi

I was born in 1991 in Gelterkinden BL and completed my apprenticeship as a forwarding agent (EFZ) E-Profile in 2011.

After that I went travelling for a longer time and improved my English skills in a language school in Brighton England.

The last 8 years I worked in the communication department of a renowned company in Basel. There I was able to gain valuable experience in administration, communication and marketing.

In 2020 I completed a further education to become an online marketing specialist and since 2021 I have been working independently as an online marketing consultant.

Today I live in Rheinfelden AG together with my partner. I am a very freedom-loving person and feel most comfortable in nature, where I can completely relax. Music is one of my greatest passions. I have been playing the guitar for many years and hardly a free minute goes by without music playing somewhere and me being able to move to it.

Stabstelle für die Sicherstellung von Evidenz

Stabstelle für die Sicherstellung von Evidenz