Live Performance Techniques – Tuning Out Distractions
I teach Live Performance Techniques to musicians who want to move from the comfort of their living room to performing on a public stage. For many, being in the spotlight does not come naturally so getting comfortable on stage and tuning out distractions is just as important as knowing how to set up and use your equipment.
This method has proven to be successful, can be done at home, and usually without having to buy any additional equipment.
First, practice performing with the TV on, preferably when the news is on. Face away from the set and have the volume loud enough to hear, but not be overbearing. You want to be able to hear your playing and singing clearly.
The rationale is that if you can learn to tune out a news show with changing topics, voices and commercials, you are on the right track.
Next, repeat this exercise while facing the TV. Now you are simulating performing in front of an audience. Pretty life-like, isn’t it? When you have mastered this exercise, it’s time to kick it up a notch.
Replace the newscast with a DVD of your favorite tear-jerker for the ladies or action movie for the guys. You want it to be one you know very well. Crank it up so you can hear everything, face the screen and start practicing. If you can tune out your favorite flick, not lose your place/rhythm and not start reciting lines and/or crying, you are only one step away from the live stage.
Next, I always recommend taking your performance to an Open Mic. You’ll perform for 15-20 minutes or up to 3-4 songs depending how the host runs it. It’s a very safe and friendly environment and you’ll have a mix of people giving you all their attention while others are chatting. Check out my post on Open Mics for more info. Here is a post on Open Mic Etiquette that you might find helpful, too.
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See you on stage!
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Steve, and his bands, have always given back to the community, supporting Special Needs Families, Christian Outreach, Food Pantries, Homeless Shelters and Medical Research.
As a songwriter and registered artist with BMI, Steve’s songwriting and gig sets span the Blues, Rock, Folk, Country and Christian genres.
2009 was the start of a busy solo performing schedule as well as sharing his love of music by teaching both Guitar and Live Performance Techniques. Steve teaches his guitar students to play the music THEY want to play, right from the start, without getting bogged down with music theory. With Live Performance Techniques lessons, students learn how to move from the living room to a live stage.