Crédits photos

National Centre for Dance Therapy

Christian Sénéchal
Director, National Centre for Dance Therapy
514.849.8681 ext. 230
Part of Les Grands Ballets’ broader vision, the National Centre for Dance Therapy will use dance to promote the health and well-being of individuals. The first phase of operations involves four pilot projects conducted in association with four university health centres: the Institut universitaire de gériatrie de Montréal (IUGM), the PERFORM Centre of Concordia University, the Centre hospitalier universitaire (CHU) Saint-Justine and the Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CHUM). The first project of its kind to be conceived and implemented by a cultural company, the National Centre for Dance Therapy is also the only one in the world offering three interconnected services: dance and movement therapy, clinical research, and Canada’s first graduate-level dance therapy training program. Les Grands Ballets are seeking the support of institutional and corporate partners to further this project of national scope. Please note that the activities of the National Centre for Dance Therapy from 2013 to 2015 mainly consist of pilot projects and research projects. Download the brochure

Our Projects

The National Centre for Dance Therapy, along with its multiple institutional and financial partners, creates dance/movement therapy programs for various clienteles in organizations in and out of Montreal.


École secondaire Mgr-A.-M. Parent (Commission scolaire Marie-Victorin)

Target population : students with moderate intellectual disabilities and students with behavioral and learning disabilities
Objective : to use dance and movement therapy as a socialization tool for adolescents with moderate intellectual disabilities and to prevent school dropouts
Research partners : UQAM and Université de Sherbrooke


Centre hospitalier universitaire Sainte-Justine

Target population : adolescents with eating disorders

Objective : to gauge the effects of dance/movement therapy on young patients with eating disorders

Research partner : Université de Sherbrooke


Centre jeunesse de Montréal

Target population : girls from 6 to 11 years old sheltered under youth protection laws

Objective : to integrate dance/movement therapy into the arsenal of tools used by professionals in social interventions, such as psychologists, social workers, and more

Research partner : Université de Sherbrooke


Institut Philippe-Pinel de Montréal

Target population : patients of the Mental Health Unit for Women Serving a Federal Sentence  

Objective : to integrate dance and movement therapy into the various treatment modalities offered on the mental health unit  

Research partner : development of a research and clinical partnership with the University of Ottawa


McGill University

Target population : students on the campus, with signs of depression and/or mood swings, whom are on the mental health services waiting list or having access to mental health services

Objective : to use dance/movement therapy as a psychological support tool for students in need and having communicational disabilities, or not having access to the mental health services

Research partner : McGill University


Hôpital de réadaptation Villa Medica

Target population : patients victims of a stroke in the thirty days prior to the start of the treatment

Objective : to integrate a dance/movement therapist to the multidisciplinary acute-care medical team, to complement the rehabilitation process of patients victims of a stroke

Research partner : Centre hospitalier de l’Université de Montréal (CHUM)

End of program : June 2014

Presentation of preliminary findings at the Canadian Stroke Congress in Vancouver in October 2014  

At present, there is no university training program in Canada specializing in dance and movement therapy. Canadian students wishing to pursue a career in this field must go to the United States for graduate-level training at one of the six universities... Read more
Dance therapy first emerged in the United States in the 1940s, when various pioneers developed methods based on diverse approaches to bodily movement. The founding of the American Dance Therapy Association (ADTA) in 1966 allowed dance therapists to... Read more