Two weeks today the students from my Drama Communication class will be performing to an audience at a theatre in Ebisu, and judging from today’s session the punters are in for a treat. There is still a lot of tightening up to do, but the basic structure is now there, and the enthusiasm of the students is, as ever, commendable. Some of the sketches are genuinely hilarious, and it is great to see all of the students getting so involved, having thrown off many of the inhibitions that were there at the start of the course. In fact, with many of them it is now a case of trying to get them to bring it down a level.
Over the course of our recent focus on ECT, I have certainly come to re-evaluate my own feelings towards this controversial treatment. Like many people, I had based most of reservations on the negative portrayal of the procedure in films such as ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ and ‘Return to Oz’, without any real understanding of the science, or a consideration for the positive effect that it has had on many people’s lives. The change in my viewpoint has been entirely down to the excellent research and presentation skills of my students, and once again highlights the importance of good communication between Scientists and the general public. All that being said, I am still a little bit sceptical of the statistic that 54% of ECT patients consider a visit to the dentist to be a more painful experience.