How to Overcome Stage Fright and Be More Confident While Singing
Simple steps to conquer your fear of public singing
Whether you’re on stage alone or with a choir, stage fright is a real concern for performers. Stage fright is the overly nervous feeling one can get before getting on stage to sing. Once you are worked up in your head, it can be hard to shake the feeling. If you are worried about stage fright or have experienced it before, do not fret! Just because it has happened to you doesn’t mean it has to happen again.
We have put together a list of simple and realistic steps you can take to overcome stage-fright and improve your confidence. So, let’s look at what stage fright is and how to overcome it and sing more confidently.
What is Stage Fright?
To start, stage fright is that nervous feeling you get before performing. It is a type of phobia and can manifest itself physically, causing some effects that could hinder your performance or keep you from getting on stage altogether. Being nervous is common among singers, but stage fright is when you simply cannot perform. It can show up as:
- Dry mouth
- Sweaty hands
- Increase in heart rate
- The inability to speak or sing
One of the easiest things you can do to eliminate stage fright is to be over prepared for your performance. Know your song like the back of your hand. Practice as much as possible. Repeat the lyrics over and over to yourself. If you think you are practicing too much, good! The more prepared you are the less likely your brain will be to get you to the point of stage fright. Don’t just have your lyrics memorized, either. Make sure you have your vocal techniques down, as well.
If you are new to choir performances, it’s important to get as much practice as you can. Sure, singing to yourself in the mirror or your pets is great, but you’ll want to make sure you get some practice in front of an audience, too. Try low pressure environments such as an open mic or karaoke bar to get your feet wet. Even though you won’t be with your choir or doing that performance, getting exposure to being in front of crowds is going to be beneficial in solving your stage fright issue. The more you perform, the more comfortable you’ll be!
Create a Pre-Performance Routine
Many choir singers have a pre-performance ritual that gets them ready to go. This can be whatever you want it to be. Yoga, getting ready, vocal warm ups, or breathing exercises are some common rituals. Having the same routine before every performance will help you to get in the right mindset and hopefully alleviate any potential stage fright.
Find a Familiar Face
Once you’re on stage, seeing the crowd can be overwhelming. It can help to pick a friend before the show to focus on and spend most of your time looking at them. Don’t stare them down, though. Be sure to let your gaze move around the crowd or look at the ceiling and your other choir singers. If you start to feel nervous, move your eyes back to your designated friendly face where you know you can focus and they are aware of what’s going on.
Don’t Forget to Eat
When we’re feeling anxious, the first thing to forget about is eating. A good rule of thumb is to eat about an hour before your performance. Eat something delicious, perhaps one of your favorite food that’s healthy. Having a full stomach can rid you of potential anxiety that leads to stage fright.
It might seem like a good idea to get energized before your performance with a giant cup of coffee, but caffeine should typically be avoided. Caffeine is a stimulant and can jump start anxiety, which can make your stage fright worse. Having coffee in the morning is fine, but it’s not recommended to have any caffeine within a couple hours of your performance.
It can be easy to skimp on the rest with how busy you are, but never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep. Getting proper rest will leave you clear headed and ready for your choir performance. You’ll be energized and be in the best shape possible for your big performance.
To sum it up, stage fright is a very real problem that choir singers face. There are steps you can take that require little effort to ensure you are at your very best for performing. Getting proper sleep, practicing and making sure you eat well are a few simple steps that will make performing a breeze. Don’t forget that stage fright is all in your mind, but the brain can be very powerful! The physical effects resulting from anxiety in your mind can be detrimental to your performance, so practicing these steps will set you up for success and you’ll sing more confidently.
If you found this article useful, here you can find a series of blog posts with useful tips, helpful insights, and fascinating facts about the world of choirs and singing, as well as interesting and inspiring choir stories!