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Stage fright - Help!

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Susan-Marie 03 Dec 98 - 08:30 AM
Allan C. 03 Dec 98 - 08:49 AM
Alice 03 Dec 98 - 09:05 AM
Bert 03 Dec 98 - 09:25 AM
MMario 03 Dec 98 - 09:43 AM
FIDDLER MIKE 03 Dec 98 - 10:01 AM
Dan Keding 03 Dec 98 - 10:20 AM
Barry Finn 03 Dec 98 - 10:33 AM
DonMeixner 03 Dec 98 - 10:49 AM
Steve Parkes 03 Dec 98 - 11:21 AM
Big Mick 03 Dec 98 - 11:40 AM
FIDDLER MIKE 03 Dec 98 - 02:58 PM
03 Dec 98 - 03:44 PM
Brack& 03 Dec 98 - 05:23 PM
harpgirl 03 Dec 98 - 06:12 PM
Roger in Baltimore 03 Dec 98 - 06:31 PM
Barbara 03 Dec 98 - 08:15 PM
McMusic 03 Dec 98 - 08:29 PM
Hannah 03 Dec 98 - 09:48 PM
Susan-Marie 07 Dec 98 - 08:38 AM
Jon W. 07 Dec 98 - 11:23 AM
Susan-Marie 07 Dec 98 - 01:32 PM
FIDDLER MIKE 07 Dec 98 - 02:13 PM
Allan C. 07 Dec 98 - 02:32 PM
Len N 08 Dec 98 - 11:44 PM
McMusic 17 Dec 98 - 05:15 AM
Gearoid 17 Dec 98 - 05:22 AM
Steve Parkes 17 Dec 98 - 07:26 AM
Dani 17 Dec 98 - 02:23 PM
Bert 17 Dec 98 - 02:49 PM
Jack mostly folk 17 Dec 98 - 03:07 PM
Susan-Marie 17 Dec 98 - 04:36 PM
McMusic 17 Dec 98 - 05:57 PM
Steve Parkes 18 Dec 98 - 03:18 AM
Dani 18 Dec 98 - 03:38 PM
Jen 19 Dec 98 - 11:28 PM
Steve Parkes 21 Dec 98 - 03:49 AM
McMusic 23 Dec 98 - 02:03 AM
Steve Parkes 23 Dec 98 - 03:48 AM
Hank 23 Dec 98 - 09:02 AM
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Subject: Stage fright - Help!
From: Susan-Marie
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 08:30 AM

It happened again last Sunday - I was asked to sing at a child dedication ceremony, so I learned the requested song, showed up at the appointed time, was REALLY looking forward to singing it and singing it well....

but as soon as I opened my mouth panic set in. Instead of the smooth, soaring melody I'd rehearsed, I could hear a tremble in my voice and I couldn't throw myself into the song enough to give it my best effort.

THAT IS SO FRUSTRATING!

I'd love to hear from other singers who've suffered from stage fright and either overcome it or controlled it. I did once get help from a few shots of rum when I sang at a coffeehouse, but I'd hate to be dependent on alchohol - especially first thing on a Sunday morning ;)


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Allan C.
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 08:49 AM

Some venues are more intimidating than others. Usually after the first couple of songs of a stage performance - and the resultant audience reaction - the lump in my throat goes away and my hands don't have the sweaty shakes anymore. However, I find that singing at a wedding or somesuch is much more daunting. There is no audience reaction until after the show is over. Once, I became so flustered that I couldn't even read the lyrics on the sheet music in front of me. I ended up inventing two entirely new verses! I found out afterward that most folks never even noticed. As to what to do about nervousness, I wish I had some good advice. I would even take a shot at neuro-linguistic programming if I thought it would help!


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Alice
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 09:05 AM

(Hi, Allan, good to *see* you. Don't you dare brainwash yourself, you're great just being you. ;->)

Many people on this forum have been performing longer than I have, but I can say in my experience, the more I have taken the opportunity to sing in public, the less nervous I have become in performing. If it helps to organize a weekly sing along with friends and family and strangers, that can give you more time singing to an audience. One opera performer story that was told to me is that feeling like throwing up can be focussed on to open the throat, lift those muscles in there, and can be turned to an advantage. (!) One conductor told a friend of mine, If it feels like you are going to throw up, GOOD, then hold that open position. Deep breathing before going on helps to calm panic.

alice


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Bert
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 09:25 AM

I got a tip from a public speaking seminar that helps me. They said, 'Make eye contact at someone in the audience and speak(sing) to them'. But don't focus on just one person all the time. Once you have started, swap focus to different members of the audience.

HTH, Bert.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: MMario
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 09:43 AM

I have had the same problem - usually singing at a family event or for friends... I am lucky that most of my singing is done "in charactor" at faire or other events - because my charactors do NOT get as nervous as I do! (I think it has to do with the double layering - I am concentrating on "being" someone else, so don't have time or energy to worry about the singing) The other thing I have found is that "symptoms" that seem glaring and obvious to the performer sometimes are not even noticable to the audience. I remember one song that through the entire thing I kept thinking "keep the knees locked" because I was shaking so hard -and I thought my voice was wavering all over the place.. but several audience members told me they could not percieve either the shaking or the tremble...

MMario


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: FIDDLER MIKE
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 10:01 AM

I always get nervous at special occasions, where you are known by the audience. Being relaxed is really important. A few weeks ago we played on a weekday evening and I had to rush after work to make the show. I was so tense that when the first fiddle tune was introduced as "Sally Ann", I played "Mississippi Sawyer". The band picked it up and everything was fine, but when I realised what I'd done I just went blank and had to stop and start over. And I've been performing since I was twelve.(and that's more years than I'm going to tell).
Any technique you can use to make you relax will help. When I'm nervous I sometimes focus on some object in the back of the room and just play or sing to it.

If you find a sure cure (other than rum) for the problem, please let us all know.

Keep singin' Mike T.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Dan Keding
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 10:20 AM

Susan-Marie, I think that nerves are part of the business. Most performers I know still get at least a little nervous before a show. The trick is to use that energy to your advantage. I usually walk back and forth either back stage or some other place where no one can see me. I go over the stories & songs I'll be doing or even just rehearse a new piece I won't be doing, turning that stage fright into a positive. Anytime you have to do just one peice your more apt to get nervous. It doesn't give you time to warm to the audience or the venue. Try getting there earlier, before any of the audience, walk around, get use to the room and the way it feels, sounds, and looks. I find that if I'm not a little nervous I can't do my best. I need that edge. Good luck. Dan


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Barry Finn
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 10:33 AM

I used to really beat myself up for forgetting words (because of nerves) or lines or even verses (which is sometimes easier to cover up). It hepled to see some of the great singers forget their places & all the while be very calm about it. Folk audiences are very forgiving if you're human. If you can smoothly keep going you'll be in great shape. The worst for me was my first time in front of a large crowd. The first or second First Night (maybe 1978?) in Boston at the Arlington St Church, it was packed maybe 500 people, got up & ask if I could get some help on the chorus (Rock Island Line). I was shocked, the response was strong, loads were singing through the refrain, then wham, I couldn't remember the start of the song, I couldn't remember any of the song, I could swear they could see my little heart busting through my shirt, that they could even feel my knees knocking, I was dying. I kept trying to find the start of the song & couldn't. Someone in the crowd yelled go on & try something else, so I did. It was fine once I got started in on a new song, no one notice that heart was on the outside of my shirt or that my knees kept time with the street cars. That first time was the worst & it didn't kill me, so it slowly got better from then on & I never worried about it as much after that first terrifying experience, I knew it couldn't get worst. Good luck & I hope it helps to know it happens to others & that they survive. Barry


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: DonMeixner
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 10:49 AM

My worst experiences with stage fright were years ago but as I recall them they were very bad. My sympathies but there is hope. I would suggest that you pick a tune you know so cold that it is almost boring for you to play. Make it a funny or light tune. Tom Paxton's Natural Girl For Me" was my choice for years. Pick some in the audience and sing it only to them. Girl friends or wives, husbands, sisters, pick a friendly face. After that first tune, things will usually get better. Remember, not everyone has ever heard your stale old stand by, everything is always new to someone and that is were your approval from the audience will come from. Its that approval that gets rid of the screamin' willies for you. Of course singin a one shot in a church or at a wedding is always tough and maybe a pint or two before you go will give you the courage and lubrication you need.

DonMeixner


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 11:21 AM

I usually find the time before I'm due to go on much worse these days - I'm fairly happy once I get up on my back legs. But I find my fingers seem to wander off somewhere in a world of their own, and never do as well as they did rehearsing. Maybe the answer to that is work, work, work?

A couple of things that can help when performing: get a partner, especially one that's more experienced than you are (share the blame!); if you don't play an instrument, sing from a chair, but have it the wrong way round, so you're leaning your arms over the back - this keeps your diaphragm and all the other innards in a good singing position.

What I REALLY hate is practicing in front of other people - I'm quite happy just performing!

Steve


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Big Mick
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 11:40 AM

Susan Marie,

Be of good faith, my friend. You know how talented you are. Take some quiet time, by yourself, before a performance. Use deep breathing techniques and reflect on the times that you have performed and were very well received. See the faces and hear the compliments. Why do all this? Because it will confirm that of which you are unsure. You know that you are good, because someone has listened to you and really enjoyed it. After the reflection time, spend your time eliminating those things that could negatively impact the performance. Check the tuning, do a walk through on the equipment, and if you are in an ensemble, greet and encourage your fellows. When you walk out onstage, establish a link with someone and perform for them. Put it all into making them feel that which you are trying to emote. In other words, focus on the performance. And if the voice tightens, relax, and make it do your will. Just trust your talent, you must have it or you wouldn't be here with us.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: FIDDLER MIKE
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 02:58 PM

Mick
That was ... BEAUTIFULL ...


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From:
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 03:44 PM

Several years ago I was invited to sing at the wedding of my wife's sister's nephew in Hamamatsu, Japan. I was going to sing "Love Me Tender," the words of which I had a great deal of difficulty memorizing. I took care of this by sticking a piece of paper with the key words (tender...true, etc) under the brackets of my banjo so I could glance down and get them, and I could get through the verses--but when it came time for the performance, I began with an instrumental of the bridge as an intro and was concentrating so hard on playing it correctly I failed to listen to it and so couldn't find the key for singing. After a couple of feeble attempts to find the starting note and sounding stupid, I stopped, apologized, started over with the intro, listened, found the key, and got through fine, got a good hand, bowed, returned to my seat and quivered for a while.

I vowed, of course, never to perform public in public anything of which I wasn't absolutely confident, and started writing verses in Japanese for Kumbaya.

Fortunately, I was never called upon to use them. --seed


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Brack&
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 05:23 PM

I sweat! Fairly often, the venue can be freezing, but it just drips off me, especially if I'm trying out new songs. I usually do about four gigs a week, and sometimes if I finish the night and I'm bone dry, I know that my heart hasn't been in it. It happens sometimes. The more nervous I am, the more I sweat, the better I perform. Mick Bracken.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: harpgirl
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 06:12 PM

Back in November the DoneyGals were on stage at a benefit in the middle of playing Merrily Kiss the Quaker" (we were hot, too) and the fiddler's husband came up to fuss with her mike. He then walked off and his cowboy boot hooked the mike cord and both of her mikes came crashing down off the stage. The dulcimer player and I just went on wildly and our dear fiddler was so flustered she forgot she could continue to play without miking...an old flame used to kiss me a big sloppy wet one just before he went on stage and it was fifteen years before I realized he was trying to keep his mouth from drying up! Ha! and I thought I was his muse!...I'm always more nervous singing acapella with no mikes at our monthly Irish session where we all drink and carry on than I am on any stage...go figure! harp


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 06:31 PM

Susan-Marie,

First of all, it is not Stage Fright (that would keep you off the stage completely). As many have said, most performers find that they cannot eliminate nervous energy. Seasoned performers feel it. Like others I find the first song the hardest.

There are many practical suggestions in the above posts. I would add (or echo) these. 1. If you can get a practice in at the venue, do so. This is a way to get some comfort with the location. At the very least, get there early enough to "check it out." 2. Make sure you understand your place in the program. This can eliminate one more source of anxiety. 3. Practice, practice, practice. 4. Add safety nets (music on stands, plans for what to do if you err). 5. Do some vocal warm-up exercises in the "green room" (or a nearby bathroom). It is not fair to you or your voice to hit the first note without a warm-up. Some light calesthenics or stretching will help your whole body as well. 6. Eliminate as many other stressors as you can. Be early, have a full tank of gas, have a check list of what you need to take to the performance, etc., etc. Anxiety and nervousness are cumulative. The more sources you eliminate the better you can deal with the ones you know will arrive.

It is truly an honor to be asked to sing at a special ceremony by those who have heard you sing before. As Mick has said, "Revel in that honor." The visualizations of successful performance which he suggested are powerful techniques that many athletes and performers find useful. Develop a simple relaxation technique and practice it daily. Yoga breathing is one I use. Choose one you can use on stage while you are being introduced.

Everyone finds their own way. These are suggestions that I and other performers have found helpful. Like many other tasks in this world, you will get better by doing it. Please, keep on singing and taking on challenges.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Barbara
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 08:15 PM

All these suggestions are good. I don't think most of us ever get rid of the butterflies; the trick is to teach them to fly in formation.
Yet another part of that is to pretend to be confident, comfortable and enjoying what you do, even when it's a total act. A joke often helps with that, a gentle one on yourself, not a comedy routine.
If you can fake that you are at ease, others will relax too.
Backstage at puget sound Guitar Workshop there is a big banner that says BREATHE! One new performer came out and said in opening, "I did everything wrong. I didn't go to the bathroom first, I just put on new strings, and two minutes ago, I stopped breathing."
One really large guy came out and leaned over his double size dreadnaught, hummed a note into the mike, and asked "ah say, can you all in the back SEE me okay? Raise your hands if you can't."
Those kinds of things.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: McMusic
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 08:29 PM

Susan-Marie,

I am not one of those who has performed extensively; the same thing happens to me: I get this ungodlyquiver in my voice and my cold, clammy hands shake so much, I'm sure the audience can feel the room vibrate. But, after each performance, I found it t'aint so. Almost without exception, the feedback I got was "Your voice sounded fine" or, "I never would have thought you were that nervous." Some were, I'm sure, being kind; on the other hand, I have sat through many performances by others and---Their voices sounded fine to me and I never would have thought they were nervous! I think we perceive our state far more than our listeners do. And if they are aware...well, I've always found that it really brings out their generousity. I truly think they respect the EFFORT we make. Forgetting chords, words, or entire songs can warm them to you--they sympathize with the plight of the performer. Of course, it's different if you're totally unprepared--a person shouldn't be on the stage (but by request of another performer or someone else--these are usually spur-of-the-moment things). It has been my good fortune to get to know a few professional performers (not very well, but well enough to get to know them better each time I see them), and they all have told me the same thing. 1.) It takes time to build up one's confidence and, 2.) even after years of being out on the road, they still make mistakes. As one told me--if you blow a line, the hell with it--keep on going (and this is a two time Grammy nominee with about 25 years of professional performing under her belt. Of course, another told me that she found sex a good relaxant before a performance, but I replied that it probably worked well enough for women, but we men would have to be awakened to go on stage! Just keep at it (like I will) and we'll make it through just fine. Remember, most of the time, the audience isn't even aware that you've made a mistake. Breathe deep, concentrate on what you're doing, and do te best you know how to do. Of course, it might even help to have a familiar face in the audience--if possible. It always helps me. God bless and good luck.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Hannah
Date: 03 Dec 98 - 09:48 PM

Try focusing on the youngest member of your audience because it's easier to sing to people younger than you, especially little kids(for me anyway). Bright lights help too, when you can't see who you're singing to. I had a solo in a program recently and I focused inward, on the song, instead of looking around, at first. Once I get started I'm able to look around.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Susan-Marie
Date: 07 Dec 98 - 08:38 AM

WOW - a thousand thanks to you all for your words of encouragement and advice. It had never occurred to me that doing one song at a special occassion would be harder than a 30 minute set at a coffeehouse but of course, it is, and knowing that I feel better about how nervous I got. It's also great to know that the audience doesn't hear all the flaws the performer perceives, and that many of you face the same terrors and go on performing anyway. I'll try some of your suggetions at my next solo performance - thanks again (file this under "Why I can't imagine life without Mudcat!")


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Jon W.
Date: 07 Dec 98 - 11:23 AM

If you're a religious person singing in a religious setting you might consider a prayer before performing. I found that on the rare occasions I have performed in public, if I focus on performing for the glory of God rather than for the glory of Jon, it really helps me do better.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Susan-Marie
Date: 07 Dec 98 - 01:32 PM

Your point about not singing for the glory of yourself is well taken. I've always heard that the best way to give a great performance is to get so far into the music you lose yourself. I have never gotten to that point myself, but I hope to. As you say, in a religious setting, there's an obvious alternative to singing for yourself or the audience - and since the church I sing in is a unitarian universalist church, the possibilities are infinite! ;-)


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: FIDDLER MIKE
Date: 07 Dec 98 - 02:13 PM

Hay Jon W.

Even if you're not singing in a religous setting, a prayer and singing for the glory of God, will always help.
Keep prayin' and singin'

Mike T.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Allan C.
Date: 07 Dec 98 - 02:32 PM

Make a joyful noise...


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Len N
Date: 08 Dec 98 - 11:44 PM

Susan Marie

I do not play out in public all that often, but it would not be too much of an exageration to say that I have spent a good chunk of the last twently years of my life actively pursuing answers to the question of how to deal with stage fright, with some success. As a kid I was very shy, and I can still remember sitting in a classroom as a freshman in college and experiencing near panic, (palms sweating, heart pounding etc.) when I would raise my hand to add my opinion to the discussion at hand. To me this seemed rediculous and I was determined to shake it, so I consequently began to seek out situations that would force me to speak or perform in front of others which included; learning to play an instrument(s) so that eventually people might expect me to play for them, working in the social services for my first decade out of school, largely because it always put me in the position of having to speak to varying groups of people, doing live talk radio, and giving talks in the church I belong to,(also unitarian universalist). The reason I mention these other activities is that I have always found the issue of stage fright to be every bit as present with these as with playing or singing for the public. Anyway, I have found some techniques that have worked quite well for me in dealing with stage fright. One that has already been mentioned is picking out individuals in the audience to sing to, although for me this is most helpful if it is a person who I don't know, (I think because I expect people who I know to be paying attention, but If can captivate a complete stranger it gives me more of a boost). This technique goes right out the window of course if the house lights are off and there is a spot on you because then you can't see anyone, and for me that makes me more nervous. The one technique that I have found works the best for me, and which I don't believe has been mentioned, is to be as prepared and rehearsed as I can be leading up to the performance, but adopting an attitude shortly before going on that sais...." either I will live through this, or I won't, in which case I won't have to worry about it." What this means for me is imagining the worst case scenario of what could happen when I go on stage, (this might include forgetting all my lines, playing like garbage, getting booed off the stage, and experiencin large amounts of public humiliation), and then I ask myself if I can live through such an experience. Invariably the answer I arrive at is yes, and then I feel much more at ease because I know that even if I screw up, its not likely to be anywhere near to the extent of a worse case scenario, and I already know I can live throught that. So all of the sudden I am liberated to play the best performance I can play, without worrying a whole lot about "what if I make a mistake or two" ... which I usually do but nobody seems to notice except for me.

Len N


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: McMusic
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 05:15 AM

And--as has been cited before here--a little praying never does any harm!


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Gearoid
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 05:22 AM

Brack&

I just read your response (and I'm convinced you're Christy Moore)

Only joking

Gearoid


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 07:26 AM

I wonder how many of us who perform are actually shy in "real" life? I distinctly remeber having the urge to sing in public when I was a small child, forty or more years ago, and it's not too bad once I get up on my back legs and start. But no way can I go into a room full of strangers and start a conversation! I've never worked out whether the one thing is an attempt to compensate for the other.

Steve


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Dani
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 02:23 PM

Boy, do I wish I'd read this thread YESTERDAY instead of this afternoon!!

I've always sung to myself, with family, in church. This morning I had my first real gig. In my daughter's second grade classroom. I wanted to throw up! Do you mean to tell me it doesn't get any easier??!!

The first thing I asked them was how THEY feel when they get up in front of people. "Nervous, scared, embarrassed, sick" What is this all about??

Of course, when I began a song on key, and they learned quickly and began to sing along, I remembered that they WANTED me there, and WANTED to hear me. That feels better...


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Bert
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 02:49 PM

Dani,

Talk about a baptism of fire, performing for a second grade class. I'm getting goose bumps just thinking about it.

Bert.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Jack mostly folk
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 03:07 PM

Hi Susan-Marie and Mudders It's called the "Confidence Game", and without confidence, you will likely be shaken and nervious reguardless of the size or who your audience is. Memory work is the key to your sucess of performing, if you can't memomrize your material then use a "cheat sheet" and sing it out. Practice a song until you know it by heart, and play it with your instrument as you practice, that will also allow you to sharpen your musical skills and the memory work and will be less tedious. Another hurdle and possibly the hardest is the live performance in front of a real audience.Go find an "Open Mic" or a " Song Circle" and practice the craft of performing.You must listen close to the other participants because it's there you pick up little tricks of the trade.Do't go there just for the sake of hearing yourself. Share what you have but part of that sharing is being equally interested it what the other folks are sharing Oh! You can't find one, then start one.Coffee shops,book stores,libraries and homes is really begging for the opportunity to bring in people who play and sing. Everyone has had to overcome the stage fright hurdle , how they did it might be a little different but most important of all is, don't give up. Keep going until you conquer the little rascal. Confidence is re-inforced by knowing your material. You conquer stage fright and you've conquered the world. Good Luck Jack


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Susan-Marie
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 04:36 PM

Dani - It DOES get better. The first time I sang in front of people my knees shook so bad I was grateful I had a long dress on, but now that doesn't happen. After reading everyone's stories and tips I'm sure in a few years I'll be able to give my best whatever the circumstances. I think Len has the right idea about exposing yourself to as many public-speaking/singing situations as possible.

And Steve, that's a great question about why introverts feel compelled to perform in public. I'm an introvert, I sit in corners at parties, but something makes me want to sing in front of people. Go figure.

Thanks for the reminder anout the song circles Jack, I'm lucky enough to live in an area with one, and I think joining in will help.


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: McMusic
Date: 17 Dec 98 - 05:57 PM

Steve Parke-- When I enter a room full of strangers (or even mostly full of sdtrangers, for that matter), I almost turn to stone. Why, I'm even shy in internet chat rooms! I'm the only person I know who can go to a party (yikes!), stay three hours (double yikes and an ugh thrown in!) and have very few people even aware that I was there. I might even say that most of the musicians I've met were inherently shy; and I would say it, too, but I'm too bashful to voice such an opinion!


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 18 Dec 98 - 03:18 AM

Hi, McMusic - sounds like we've been to the same parites a few times! Next time we should both wear a red carnation or something, then at least we'll have each other to talk to!

My mind's been racing on while I was typing this (it often leaves me behind, but I don't think it shows), and I started thinking, maybe we singers and musicians - or just we shy people - should have Masonic-style secret signs to announce ourselves in strange places. Now I've caught up with myself, I think it's a terrible idea (no offence to you Masons out there), but it's a shame we can't stand on a chair and shout "I'm shy - talk to me!" or something.

Of course, for a room full of children, multiply everything by two!

Steve


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Dani
Date: 18 Dec 98 - 03:38 PM

Speaking of parties - I am NOT a shy person, but my forgetfulness of people's names and where I should know them from keeps me from acting 'hail-fellow-well-met'. I got a good chuckle from a button I saw today (good for conferences, parties, reunions?) that said,

"It's OK - I don't remember your name either."


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Jen
Date: 19 Dec 98 - 11:28 PM

I don't even sing in front of people, and I get stage fright!! Got over most of it last summer when me, my fiance, and my sister were the only music for my aunt's wedding... we sang our hearts out, and people wanted to know if we were professional! So that was a boost to the confidence.

I think you need confidence in yourself to do anything, singing included. I used to get really nervous, short of breath, etc, when I was supposed to sing a solo at Church, and it still happens, sometimes, but I tell myself I'll sing wonderfully and I'm usually fine.
I'm hoping this works for my a cappella(sp?) solo on Christmas Eve. I must be nuts!! But I'll do fine.(I hope!)

Anyway, I know what you mean about stage fright. But since I've been singing for years now, it's better. It probably won't ever go away, but it's better.

Jen


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 21 Dec 98 - 03:49 AM

Dani - I have the same trouble with names, in one ear and out the other. But I even forget the names of people I've known for years! It runs in the family - my mother's as bad, and her mother couldn't even remember my name: she'd go through all the family names, but she used to start with the girls, so I was always "Jean-Brenda-Albert"!

My little brother, who's a psychiatric nurse, tells me this is called nominal dysphasia. For some reason, I can remember that!

Steve


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: McMusic
Date: 23 Dec 98 - 02:03 AM

Steve, I suppose for the shy person/singer/musician's secret sign we could do the old movie thing--use our index fingers to stretch our collars, turn beet red, look around in nervous discomfort, and gulp real loud. Why, I knew a fella who was so shy that once he blushed at the sound of his own echo!


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 23 Dec 98 - 03:48 AM

I don't know if I'd have the nerve to blush in public, with all those people watching!


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Subject: RE: Stage fright - Help!
From: Hank
Date: 23 Dec 98 - 09:02 AM

blush? I'm not blushing, it is always too hot in these concert halls. I get heat stroke easialy, my fair skin. Why I remember one time on a canoe trip to the middle of nowhere I got heat stroke and couldn't move... Now get me a glass of water and let me sit down before I faint.

Well, I do faint easialy. Just getting up after dinner will do it if I'm not carefull. Accually I don't have a problem being on stage, but I don't know what I'd do if I soloed. I love being on stage in choirs though.


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