Working on your stage performance
Stage performance: Giving a good stage performance is something that will set you out from the rest. It’s not only about how to sing the song; it’s also about how you give the stage performance on the day!
Appropriate to some stage performance, it’s important to be pragmatic and be able to adapt to the situation so consider the following to give you the edge on the day.
More on Stage Performance
Keep an eye on the atmosphere
Your stage performance depends a lot on the stage and venue size. What would have seemed atmospheric on a little stage may not work on a larger stage.
During shows try and look at how other acts and their stage performance; watching a variety of acts you can see the atmosphere amongst the audience and how it can change rapidly.
Analyse the performances of others singing during sound check or by watching their stage performance. Think about the best spots to walk to and from, or where to place yourself for your dramatic final note. Notice how and where the lighting is set up on stage and avoid areas where it is dark.
Make an impression from beginning to end
Walk confidently on stage and maintain that confidence throughout your stage performance. It’s easy to tell which performers are nervous when they walk on stage and it often takes a while to fade. Even established acts get nervous but learn to act to hide the nerves. The more performing you do, the easier this should get, even if the nerves don’t go.
Another good way to make an impression when you enter the stage is with your image. This is dealt with in more detail in a later chapter.
If you’ve not been announced, announce yourself when you come on stage but no more. Thank the audience at the end of your stage performance, and let them know you’re grateful they watched you and just quickly where they can find you.
Stage Performance Advice
The key to a good stage performance starts with confidence. Performing live can be a daunting task. There are lots of things happening such as feeling a mixture of emotions, including nervousness and excitement.
Try to remain unfazed as over the course of time you may encounter technical glitches and bright lights making it hard to see amongst lots of other problems that come with a live stage performance. They will initially be a challenge to you first time round and will throw you from how you have normally practised.
Giving a good stage performance is about moving around on stage. If you can master the act of grooving to your tunes, you will go down a lot better with the audience on the day. Make sure it is appropriate though. The whole idea of being a good performer is for it to be fitting and come across as natural.
Being a good stage performer is also about communicating well with other act members and the audience. Looking at random audience members in the eyes and singing along with your other act members all adds to a rounded stage performance on the day.
This will help you forget about the nerves beforehand and people will recognise that you’re creating good stage presence.
Tips for Stage Performance
Engage with the audience
Engaging with the audience is very important when performing. It can be from simply smiling and giving eye contact to showing you’re enjoying yourself to using facial expressions to reflect the emotions of the song.
If you have a song where you can’t make use of the stage as easily, don’t forget hand gestures can help to enhance a stage performance by reaching out to the audience.
Make use of props and dancers
Make use of whatever you have to work with. You’ve got a stage so move around it. You’ve got a mic stand, so use it during the softer bits and take the mic out when the song becomes more upbeat. Don’t be restricted by your props.
Dancing whilst singing
If you’ve got a really upbeat song, why not bring some dancers along? Not only will it be a more enjoyable stage performance but also a more memorable one.
Of course you are only as good as your worst dancer, and ensure you get involved in the routine so you are part of the stage performance. Plenty of practice is essential!
If you go down this route you will also have to consider your fitness. Doing large parts of the routine could affect your breathing and vocal control in general.
Whatever mistake you make when performing, never stop and/or apologise, you will only highlight the mistake! Chances are the audience didn’t even notice it. Most importantly avoid long pauses.
You will always make mistakes, so just give a little smile and the audience will hopefully warm to you if they are aware you have made a mistake; this will come across as professional, confident and charming.
Always record videos of your own stage performance
You can then review it back and see it from the audience’s point of view, which may be uncomfortable to begin with but is also critical in seeing how to improve.