As you progress through your singing lessons for adults, you will likely want to show off your skills and get on stage! Some musicians find performing a little nerve racking, while others feel right at home with everyone watching them. No matter how you feel about live performance, one thing is for sure – proper preparation, consistency and experience will turn you into a confident performer in no time.
Our 10 live performance tips for singers will help you put on your best show, whether you’re just starting out or are already earning your stripes as an artist.
1. Practice Makes Perfect
Practice, practice, practice! There’s nothing like a solid practice routine that will get you ready for the stage and ensure the nerves don’t get the better of you. If you are stumbling over your set list during rehearsals, think what it’s going to be like when you’re on stage with so many other things to focus on. You need to know your songs inside out, so no matter what happens on the day, your muscle memory kicks in, and you know exactly what to do. Feeling like you have mastered your set list will also make you naturally more confident on stage.
2. Don’t Forget About Stage Presence
This is one of the most important live performance tips for singers, that often gets forgotten about. Playing live is not just about reciting the songs perfectly! You are there to put on a show and make your audience feel like they’re a part of it. Don’t leave your on-stage interactions to chance, practice them beforehand! Think about how you want to introduce yourself, what you’re going to say in between the tracks, how you want to be perceived by the crowd. Practice in front of the mirror or, better yet, in front of friends, family or someone whose opinion you trust.
3. Think About Your Look
Of course, your sound matters the most, but this is a live show we are talking about, so what you wear is also important. Think about the genre of music you’re playing, your individual style, the venue and come up with ideas on how you want to look. If you’re in a band, you may want to co-ordinate your style with other band members. Try to imagine details that make you unique and memorable to your audience.
4. Plan Your Set Carefully
The songs you choose, the order in which you play them really matters to the overall dynamic of your show. Put together a set list, practice playing it from start to finish, rehearse your audience interaction and see what feels good. Make sure you don’t run over your allocated time – this is not fair on other performers, and you may appear unprofessional. It is another reason why it’s so important to practice your audience interaction to get an idea of how long your set actually is.
5. Get Familiar With The Venue
Being in an unfamiliar environment can make you feel more nervous so, if you can, visit the venue beforehand. Alternatively, arrive early so you can get to know your surroundings and feel more relaxed. Knowing where the sound engineer is, what the set up looks like and how you can use it will take a significant weight off your shoulders.
6. Always Arrive on Time
This goes without saying, but always arrive on time and be professional. Being late is not a character quirk and it shows a lack of respect for others. Leave plenty of time for your journey and account for potential traffic or delays. This will also give you the opportunity to have a thorough sound-check once you arrive and take unnecessary stress away from your performance. Always create a positive impression by treating everyone well. Sound engineers, lighting technicians and other staff members have all the power of making you look and sound good, so be the person they want to work with again and again.
7. Prepare for The Unexpected
A crucial live performance tip for singers is you should always prepare for the unexpected. So many things could go wrong on the day – your guitar strings might snap, there may be issues with sound, people might be making mistakes during the set – you get the idea. This is not intended to scare you, quite the opposite! It’s totally normal for things to go wrong and the best thing you can do is be prepared. Bring that extra pack of guitar strings with you, put in some extra rehearsal time and, if things go wrong, try to stay positive. If you hit a bum note or snap a string, your audience will be much more at ease and still walk away with a good impression when you’re able to treat it with a bit of humour instead of freaking out. Things don’t always go as planned but what people really remember is how you made them feel.
8. Look After Yourself
Don’t get drunk or eat too much before a show! You might feel that drinking will loosen you up, but it’s likely to hinder your performance rather than improving it. Stick to healthy, nourishing foods and stay hydrated so you can feel your best on stage. Eating too much right before can make you feel lethargic and bloated. It’s also wise to stay away from foods that don’t agree with you very well. Additionally, as you’ll know from your adult singing lessons, you should always warm up and look after your voice.
9. Relax and Enjoy Yourself
We know it’s easier said than done but try to let go of the nerves and enjoy yourself. Your audience is here for you, they’re excited to see you live and this is your time to shine. If you have taken the time to practice and prepare for the show, there’s nothing to worry about! Try to use that little bit of uncertainty and nervousness to your advantage by getting excited by the unknown rather than fearing it. Get lost in the moment and enjoy your set list.
10. Stick Around After The Show
Last but by no means least in our live performance tips for singers is stick around after your set! You’ll get to meet other artists, network, interact with your audience. This is key to making those connections that will get you invited back for more gigs and collaborations. You’re also building a support network with other artists by watching their shows, too. So don’t just scurry away as soon as your performance is done!
Do You Want to Become a Better Live Performer?
At London Singing Institute, we specialise in teaching adults of all levels in an encouraging, judgment-free environment. We take a personal approach with each student, and we strongly believe this is the best way to bring out your unique talent. Our expert vocal coaches have years of experience as live performers, and they can help you prepare your best shows! We teach a broad range of styles, including musical theatre, classical, jazz, pop, rock and blues at our stunning Central London premises and online, wherever you are.
Find out more about our adult singing courses, taught in London and remotely.
Tags: Singing Tips
, Singing advice
, singing performance