The aim of biodanza is expansion through pleasure in dance. These are the natural pleasures of moving one's body, of holding a hand, of looking into the eyes of another, of feeling connected to oneself and the world.
While biodanza is experienced as a practice of the body and soul, its theory and development are strongly grounded in rational thought. Its founder: Rolando Toro was a professor and clinical anthropologist who initially worked in mental health institutions in Chile during the Pinoche regime. He saw a society that was a long way from health. The conditions on the wards where he worked were tough and dehumanised. Yet one day there was a party. He saw to his surprise how something as simple as music and dancing utterly changed the conditions on the ward. Barriers between patients and staff were dissolved and the mood of the ward changed for days. This was enough to trigger an important line of thought:
Rolando asked himself why should it be that a simple party had a better effect than all of the therapeutic interventions that were, after all, supposed to make people feel better? Could there be a different way to change the conditions of life - not framed around patients and problems, failings and limitations, but rather around health and humanity, ease and naturalness? What happens if we nourish and grow all that is healthy in us? Does everything else follow? After much careful thought, observation, trial and development, the result was biodanza. It feels like a great party, but one leaves with the knowledge that something magical has gone on behind the scenes.