Confidence is at the heart of all impressive stage performances. And your preparation plays an important role in helping build that confidence. Experience, encouragement and stage dresses are other important factors that influence your overall performance. A greater performer capitalizes on their strengths and works to improve on their weaknesses. If you don't have the experience and are going to step on a stage for the first time, make sure to follow these 6 tips to develop confidence.
1. The Performance is About the Audience Not You
A proven strategy to feel confident on the stage and deliver a great performance is to forget that it’s about you. Always keep in mind that it is about your audience and how they feel. Your performance should focus on touching their emotions and bringing them to life.
The more you practice, the more familiar you will become with the situation and familiarity is what brings comfort, which is an important factor in confidence. Whether its samba dance or a musical performance, it requires countless hours of practice to know your steps by heart. There is nothing else that can replace practice. Practice also helps in preventing mistakes that would otherwise interfere with your confidence.
How you practice also matters a lot as a confidence-building measure. It will be best to keep the practice session just like a real concert where you perform the complete sets and there is an audience, even if it is part of your group.
3. Start with Smaller Public Shows
If you are going to perform on a stage for the first time, it is recommended to start with smaller public shows where you will have lower stress. This is a good strategy to gradually build the confidence required to step onto the stage of a major show.
4. Maintain Eye Contact with the Audience
If you do not maintain contact with your audience, they will feel disconnected. Eye contact is a kind of communication and a great stage presence is all about communicating effectively with the crowd. Eye contact communicates your emotions. You are likely to be nervous the first time you get on the stage. It is better to show nervous emotion than showing no emotions at all.
When you connect with your audience, it helps you get better control over your nerves. One of the key aspects of succeeding with stage performances is to believe in your music or dance performance. And it is through eye contact that you communicate that belief to your audience, making them believe in your performance too.
It is easy for stage performers to get lost in the moment. However, don't allow yourself to retreat into yourself. A performance shouldn’t become an introspective pursuit. It should be about bringing out everything that is inside you – your emotions and passion. It is through control that you can bring all that out to your audience. Give your everything in the performance while ensuring that it flows out in a steady stream.
6. Learn to Breathe Properly
When it comes to taking control of the situation, your breathing also plays an important role. If you learn how to control your breath, you can learn how to feel relaxed.
Try a simple method before stepping onto the stage:
- Breathe for a slow count of 5
- Breathe through the nose
- Make sure that your stomach expands
- Keep the shoulders steady
- Breathe out from the nose or mouth for a slow count of 5 (don't hold the breath at the top)
The result is that you can think clearly and overcome any fears.
So if you are preparing for your first stage performance, make sure to follow these tips. Once you understand these core basics, you will change your perception of stage performances. These tips go beyond your first stage performance and can help you feel better and more confident every time you find yourself in front of a large audience.