Life Performance

San Francisco | New York City

Life Performance

San Francisco | New York City

“Embracing performance and play as catalysts
for new and more creative ways of living,
loving, healing and helping.”


Life Performance Coaching is one of several centers in the U.S. that practice social therapeutics and performance activism in San Francisco, New York City and via videoconferencing.

Social therapeutics is an alternative and radically humanistic approach to human development and social change that relates to people of all ages and life circumstance as social performers and creators of their lives and indeed the world. It grew out of social therapy a non-diagnostic, development focused group psychotherapy that has been in its very practice a challenge to the medical model. Every week in therapy and coaching centers around the country and now the world via the magic of the internet, social therapists and coaches lead diverse groups of people in the intimate, creative, messy activity of building and creating groups where people can get help with the pain that comes from living in a deeply troubled world.

Executive, professional and personal coaching at Life Performance Coaching are for people who are ready to make a serious commitment to growth. We deal with a broad range of development issues with a particular focus on relationship building.

We are excited about the growth of a movement of people across the U.S. and globally who are embracing performance as a catalyst for new and more creative ways of living, loving, healing and helping.

Joyce Dattner


Joyce Dattner is a life performance and executive coach based in New York City and San Francisco, where she directs Life Performance Coaching. She is the former director of the All Stars Project of the San Francisco Bay Area, and now sits on its national Board of Directors. A senior trainer, Joyce has traveled internationally to advance the East Side Institute for Group and Short Term Psychotherapy’s performance-based approach to human development. In the early 1970s, she taught in the New York City public schools before joining Institute co-founder, Fred Newman, to develop social therapeutics.

Helen Abel


Helen Abel, a social worker and therapist for more than 40 years, is now bringing her passion and skill for helping people transform painful ways of living their lives to her work as a life coach at Life Performance Coaching. She has been influenced by her training over the last decade in the practice and theory of improvisational theatre, and by her ongoing study of the work of Fred Newman and other postmodern approaches to human development and community building. Helen has come to believe that she can most effectively help people develop by helping them learn how to use their capacity to create, perform and play. As a life coach, Helen helps her clients access these skills as she leads them in creatively developing more effective and impactful conversations with their friends, family and colleagues.

Dr. Raquell Holmes joins Life Performance Coaching staff to offer online life performance coaching for professionals in scientific and technical fields. Her goal is to create an environment in which everyone can get help with the emotional, performative, and strategic (philosophical and political) challenges of creating their careers. This includes, and is not limited to, pursuing graduate degrees, early career jobs or social innovations in the culture and practice of science research and education. 
“Social therapeutics,” Holmes remarks, “the name says so much. It is a practice of talking with others that challenges our assumptions about how we have to work, what others are supposed to be doing, why our work environment is so stressful, to name a few.”

As a long time life coach, Randy Wilson is a skilled and effective leader of creating environments that are challenging and loving and that help clients become more creative choice makers. Having grown to meet many challenges in his life, including living with HIV for nearly 4 decades, he has come to believe that participating in building community focused on the development of all involved helps to reshape and redefine emotional and physical pain.

People respond in all sorts of ways to how they experience pain in their lives including using alcohol, drugs and/or sex to “medicate” themselves. Randy specializes in helping his clients recreate their relationship to that pain, both physical and emotional by helping them transform how they live their lives with others. Trained in Life Performance Coaching’s performance-based approach to development, Randy believes that people from all walks of life can come together and learn how to use our human capacity to perform to create new and effective ways of relating to ourselves, our friends and to the world.

Let's Develop:

Creating New Performances of Memory Loss, Dementia

& Growing Older

A playful and philosophical exploration with Mary Fridley and Susan Massad, M.D .with special guests

In this experiential workshop, we will use improvisational games, creative exercises and philosophical conversation to explore what it means to create an environment that encourages the joy of discovery, the emergence of creativity and embrace the risk-taking and dream making possible when improvisational play is  how  we do everything in our lives. We welcome everyone – people living with dementia and memory loss, care partners, family members, artists and advocates, health professionals and community members – looking for new and more creative ways to approach aging, memory loss and dementia.

Mary Fridley is pro-bono Director of Special Projects at the East Side Institute for Group and Short Term Psychotherapy (ESI) , a workshop leader and designer, a playwright, theater director and non-profit fundraising consultant. Trained as a social therapeutic practitioner, a post-modern humanistic and group-oriented therapeutic and education approach, Mary co-leads a popular workshop series, ‘Laughing Matters’, for people of all ages and life circumstances across the country.

Susan Massad is a retired physician with 51 years of internal medicine practice. She was an early pioneer who brought performance and improvisation into training medical residents in the late 90’s, and was honored in 2004 as one of the best doctors in NYC. In 2006 she launched a senior theater and improvisation workshop program called the New Timers. As ESI faculty she leads ongoing conversations on health, wellness and growing older. Susan wrote her first play, REMEMBER? REMEMBER!, that deals with aging and memory loss.

Friday, November 1st, 12:30 pm to 3:00 pm

Stagebridge, our community partner,

at the First Congregational Church of Oakland,

2501 Harrison St, Oakland

Fee: $40; Lower Income: $25

*Special 10% discount available for current Stagebridgers.

Contact Jill Battalen at 347-228-0034.


Contact Us

Joyce Dattner

(415) 835-1010, ext. 1


(415) 835-1010, ext. 2

Randy Wilson

(415) 835-1010, ext. 3

Raquell Holmes

(415) 835-1010, ext. 4


Mailing Address

3871 Piedmont Ave #320
Oakland CA 94611-5378

New York City Office

19 West 34th St #PH
New York NY