How to encourage a child for his/her first performance?
My son is 11 years old and he will be performing for the first time on stage. He is learning guitar and will perform with his two friends. He is little nervous. How to encourage him to enjoy himself in the process ?
I would talk about what other people have said about him, stuff thats positive, but say specific names. The younger the person the better, as long as they are at least a couple years older than him. He will get the wow, an older kid thinks im good factor and have more confidence, thereby enjoy himself better. From experience, I doubt telling him "enjoy the moment" will stick in a short amount of time. Also, tell him how only people who are famous guitar players started young. Let him feel special and he will enjoy it on his own, then once he experiences it, turn it into a life lesson.
I definitely agree with WhydThatHappen, approval from somebody "cool" helps a lot. If he has a chance to perform in front of anybody else, each performance he does will give him more confidence and help him get over his nerves. If you can get some other family or friends to come listen, it'll get him used to performing and, hopefully give him a taste of the thrill of performing. It would be great if his band could do a dress rehearsal show in front of some of their friends, then they'll have some groupies already before the big concert.
When I'm teaching circus, I help my students pick a theme for their routine, and then have them practice in character. Sometimes having a persona you can assume when you get on stage can really boost your confidence. It makes the whole performance an act, so you don't have to feel self-conscious or personally judged, instead you are just playing a character. If this is his first time performing, he probably shouldn't go too over the top, because you don't want to give him too much to think about, but if there is a guitarist he admires, it might help him to watch a video and practice pretending to be that guitarist sometimes. Depending on the type of performance, you (or his teacher) could suggest they pick costumes for the show, to get them in character and help them feel like "real" rock stars. My circus kids also get a big confidence boost when I video tape them. Once they start to sound and feel good, tape them doing a dress rehearsal, then let thm watch it so they can see for themselves how good they sound and how cool they look.
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