The beginning should be strong. And I also know that I should concentrate only on the presentation. Besides these what else should I do?
Here's a powerful tool I use with my yoga students to ease anxiety and nervousness: Inhaling triggers your sympathetic nervous system, which revs you up. Exhaling triggers the parasympathetic nervous system, which calms you. Spend about three minutes on this exercise. Inhale slowly through your nose to a count of 4. Exhale slowly through the nose to a count of 6. Gradually lengthen your exhales to a count of 8.
Making the exhale longer signals the parasympathetic nervous system to calm you. It's not a new age trick. It's a biochemical process. Break a leg!
I have been going before audiences for 48 years now, singing, talking, or acting. If you are referring to the nervousness one gets, you never get past it. I still get nervous, BUT, so long as I know my material whether it be a song or a scene or a speach, and remain focused upon what I'm doing, things have a way of working themselves out.
When I was young, the old adage "imagine that all of the audience is in their underwear" was the first thing that worked.
Now, the audience is likely to be wearing underwear! So imagine them naked and covered in fluffy hair.
This helps to make them as vulnerable as you are and not so much like a bunch of people who will kill and eat you.
And remember: they WANT you to do well. They are very forgiving if you slip a little.
Never make direct eye contact with anyone in the audience. That is something that you can do when you are a more seasoned performer, and only if the act allows it.
Second: practice practice practice. The more prepared you are, the easier it will be to handle a mistake or a surprise on stage.
Third, if a mistake or surprise happens, do not freak out. Keep moving and doing your performance as if nothing happened. Most times, the audience will not even know that there was even a problem!
Finally, remember that the more you perform, the quicker the heebie jeebies will go away. Get out there and do it again and again and you will be fine.
Break a leg!
Florence Henderson once said that she had horrendous stage fright. She also said that the best thing she ever did was go through hypnosis. This may not be an option right now, but should you decide to continue to preform and still have stage fright after this particular act, that might be something you could look into. I can't vouch for effectiveness, but it certainly wouldn't hurt.
Practice, practice, practice. I have a horrible fear of playing the piano in public, which I had to force myself through for many recitals and competitions after I horribly failed (and I mean horribly failed-- not a tiny slip up no one really noticed). I practiced until I was playing the songs in my dreams, that way when the time came to play, my body did what it was supposed to and I could concentrate on putting feeling and emotion into the pieces.
Also, a totally weird tip, but I read once that blowing on your thumb (not the nail side) helps to calm you. It may be entirely psychological, but I did it gently right before my audition and I went in calm and ready, which really is a huge feat for me.
Take it slowly and carefully. Obviously not terribly slow, but don't rush through things.
I have been to theatrical thing and my best thing to share to you about stage fright is to practice and practice more of your lines and everything.
But there are things which can't control ourselves, this time, try to program your mind. Tell your mind I can do it and this is just part of my life's challenge.
Tell your mind, this is your party and everything follows in a good way.
I have been directing musical theatre for nearly 30 years. I can tell you that everyone will get a touch of stagefright! Even the most proclaimed actors in the world get stagefright. I remember watching Barbra Streisand in an interview once explaining why she stopped performing in front on people early in her career. She got a horrible case of stage fright! Barbra Streisand??!?!?! It happens. She finally got a handle on it and now performs occassionally. Does she still get stagefright? You bet! There are many methods out there to overcome it. Like dieting, you find the best way for your and stick with it. However, as a director, I will try my hardest to make sure my cast feels good, looks good and are enjoying what they are doing before I let the curtains go up. I constantly remind them to not only know their lines, but know everyone elses lines as well by reading the script through everyday. The key is to know your lines.
The breathing techniques work as well as meditation before curtain. I always call for a "Quiet 5" before we go on!
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