Advice for your performance
Your performance: Your performance is one of the most important parts of being a singer; it is the element that takes an act from being just a singer to an artist. Being able to perform on stage is a skill that all singers should master if they wish to be successful in the music industry. Here are a few pointers on how to enhance your performance on stage.
Your performance is an extract from the forthcoming book, The Secret to Success in the Music Industry.
Tips on your performance
Use the space
Whether you are on stage or in an audition room use the space around you to perform. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to walk over every inch of the stage, but make use of it, don’t let the space swamp you. Have your spatial awareness about you. As long as you are confident in your abilities, entertaining should come naturally to your performance.
Whether you are using a lead or wireless mic and/or a stand or not, you can still move around more at the upbeat parts or even use your arms to highlight emotional parts of the song. Getting close to the front of the stage helps to engage and connect to the audience too, making your performance more engaging.
Your singing performance - Facial expressions
Facial expressions are really important for your performance. Not only do they help you convey the emotion of the song to your audience, but they also help to connect with your audience. If you’re singing a sad, emotional song, bring that pain or sorrow into your facial expressions and if it’s an upbeat happy song be sure to have bright and fun faces.
What is also important to remember is to smile. Even if you are singing a sad song there are always appropriate parts to come out of character which allow you to smile. Smiling shows you are enjoying yourself, which makes the audience enjoy your performance too. Eye contact is also really important to connect with your audience.
During a vocal performance, one of the most important jobs a singer has is to do is inject emotion into the lyrics of the song. Learning how to embrace the power of emotion is vital for giving your audience a convincing performance and conveying the lyrical content. Many artists will add different vocal qualities and changes in tone in order to add emotion or edge to lyrics.
The tone of our voice generally carries much more meaning than the words we actually say, so practising methods to vary vocal tone is a sure way to improve your performance.
Look happy to be there and interact with them during and after songs, showing them that you are having fun.
Your body language gives the audience an idea of how you’re feeling when you’re on stage and conveys the emotion of the song. Making eye contact with the audience helps them to connect with you; it shows you’re confident and again adds to the interpretation of the song.
Standing tall and having good posture not only helps your performance, it makes you look professional. Body language is a main tool in expressing the emotion of the song so making sure your movement reflects this, is key. It will take time to perfect but it is essential to start incorporating it into your performance.
Know what to do with your hands! If you are flapping them about or have them in your pockets it's not going to look that professional.
Always remember when singing on stage, body language is important but it has to be fitting to your performance; don’t move just because you feel you have to.
Your performance – Open Mic UK’s guide
Steal moves from the big guys
Take some pointers from well-known singers. Don't copy one person, and don't copy large parts of their routine, just adapt little bits from here and there. Look at YouTube videos of artists you are influenced by and watch how they perform with their mannerisms and look at how they convey emotion in their performance. It may just be an act, but that’s what you aspire to be.
Take stage tips that you feel you can accommodate in your personality as an act and appropriate to the emotions of the song. Take the bits that you enjoy the most and make them your own by incorporating them into your performance.
To Stand or to Sit?
Both standing and sitting on the stage have their benefits. Sitting is well used in a more intimate setting, perhaps during open mic events; however, be aware that you will have to compensate for not moving with facial expressions, hand gestures and eye contact. Standing gives you the freedom to move wherever you like and is a more open style of performing. You can of course incorporate doing a bit of both into your performance.
Keep your hands busy. It is a common mistake for singers to just hold their hands by their sides or in their pockets where they are least effective. Some techniques to implement could include clenching your fists, swapping the microphone between hands and moving the microphone stand.
Think about image
Having your own image that reflects your personality is important, but what is more so is matching your performance and song choices with your image. It’s essential that what you perform musically matches your image and style. You also want to be comfortable with what you’re wearing during your performance.
You could consider bringing in a gimmick. Costumes are a common one, wearing something that will get people talking, or creating some stage props to have on hand to mess with. Only use it if it can be maintained. If you get too hot, you can't take the costume off mid set. It needs to be something achievable.
Check out our other tips for singers below and check out our Open Mic UK 2016 singing auditions here.
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