Hello!! Rollz aka Conscious Route me Erin will be delivering a final workshop at 3pm today for live performance. If you did catch the one last week here is a few points we touched on. If you haven’t please attend today on the 18.6.16 or, just read on, and I hope that this helps you either for tonight, or future performances…
Performance Workshop Recap:
Slowly stretching neck and body to help release tension is good way to help body naturally relax and ground before a show. Vocal exercises also help relax and prepare body for the show in hand.
Why do we perform?
We are here to enjoy performance, so try not to take it too seriously, be serious enough to progress but not so much that the enjoyment stops.
Dealing with anxiety before a show
Regular practice in the weeks leading up to a show can help lessen anxiety on the day. Being confident and knowing your material can make up for all the nerves we all naturally have about performing live and make things easier.
While waiting to perform try be as ‘in the moment’ as possible, or do what helps you to feel calm, it’s not prescriptive – different things may help different people. For me, I tend to listen to the music and other performances and put the fact I’ve got a gig out of my mind until about 15 minutes before going on. Deep breathing and also physically being aware of your body and your body weight connecting through your feet onto the ground can really be helpful to stay grounded. Remember to breathe, anxiety comes from lack ventilation, shallow breathing, but also a fear of overwhelming situations created by the mind. The body a safe place to be and helps anchor us in such times of distress.
Being light-hearted and more forgiving of yourself will help you make less mistakes. If you can smile while you make a mistakes rather than being angry it sends out a warm message to yourself and the crowd. If you do make a mistake maybe try making it in rhythmical timing. It may be even good to pause a second, compose yourself and restart, either way, just accept the mistake and move on. Thinking about making the mistake can distract you from the present and allow you to make even more mistakes. Try not to let mistakes snowball and treat it as something that happens to humans – which we all are – the world will not end promise.
Make sure you perform with your mouth about an inch or so away and to the centre of the mic for the maximum sound benefit. If you move the mic or stand or your mouth around too much you will lose sound and this could affect the clarity of your performance. If you are going to hit a loud part of the song and sing powerfully you can either move your head back or mic away from you a bit further as you sing. Use your mic as an instrument to help both yourself and the sound guy to get the most out of your performance.
Make sure mic stand is placed at the right height and positioning for your performance, the sound guy is there to help you, but you need to let him know what isn’t working for you. If you say nothing he will take it that as everything is fine. If the sound isn’t right in your monitor and you can’t hear vocals, guitar, or instruments of other band members this is also something that as an artist you need to address. Learn to communicate with sound men because it can make for a much better show when you have a good monitor mix – and hard one if you haven’t.
Performing with instruments like acoustic guitar can help ground you. Resting your arm over and pulling it into body helps anchoring, keeping the guitar to your lower body can also help to hit lower notes for singers – particularly on difficult low songs
It may be difficult to look at people and you may feel embarrassed. The trick to look like you are engaging with the crowd is to pick 3 points in the room and, as you look out or perform, just in turn take time to look at each point. To the crowd it will look like you are looking at them, which helps them be more engaged in your performance, and try smile and use movement to help with anxiety or fears. The looser and more into it you are, the more the crowd will engage, and the better your performance be.
Introducing yourself and your music
It’s important to make a connection to the crowd, as the more they get to know you, or the more connection you create the more at ease and the more they may engage, from my experience anyway. What helps me is introducing myself and, when feels right, maybe saying “I’m a bit nervous today but glad to be here” or saying “nice to be here on such a nice sunny day” or even just “How are you?” or “is anyone from Edinburgh here?” and again, in this, make sure you do what is comfortable for you – it’s not prescriptive. I find going with the flow in what mood I’m in and being really in tune with that on the night helps my connection to audience, if I feel cheeky I’ll be that, if I’m a bit shy I may be that, or if I feel full of energy then I’ll be that. If you feel awkward about talking and being off the cuff with talking with people you can rehearse this pre-gig and practice things you might say, and even when you might say it. Practice is okay to get use to the process – it can be daunting at first but after a while it can be quite fun too!
Be true, be authentic, be you, it’s important in art and life.
REMEMBER TO HAVE FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!