Dancers who are seasoned performers usually have a pretty good handle on their stage fright. For those who are new to performing however, pre-performance stage fright can be a nerve-wracking roadblock. Having the jitters do go hand-in-hand with performing on stage, but there are ways to channel any nervous energy into positive energy that can enhance your performance. Here are a tips to keep in mind to ensure that happens!
A few days before the performance, the set should be well-ingrained into your muscle memory.
Focusing on the musicality of the set will help you prepare for any lag-time or other sound issues on stage (i.e.: that obscure beat you're supposed to hit not sounding so obvious).
Listen to the set with your eyes closed and visualize yourself dancing on stage.
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With your eyes closed, you'll not only be able to listen to the less apparent beats you need to hit, but feel the music and what the impact of the choreography has on your body.
By knowing the musicality inside-out and visualizing yourself performing, you're essentially securing the calibre of your performance on performance day.
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There is a very fine line between practicing just enough to stay warm/stretched out and over-practicing.
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Over-practicing tires your body out.
You want to be able to go as full-out in a controlled manner as you practiced for.
This does take some trial and error, so the more you perform, the more you will be able to nail this balance!
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On the day of, practice as much as your team directors/project directors want your team to, and if there are still certain spots in the set you feel like you need to go over the details of, spot clean yourself to refresh those details.
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Barring that, keep the full-out practices to a minimum, so you don't peak and exhaust yourself before performing.
Before each run-through your director wants your team to do, approach it as if each one were the real performance:
Imagine your nerves tingling, the anticipation of getting on-stage, the hushed voices and the last-minute reminders while on deck.
Train yourself to get used to all the stimuli that comes with performing and pay attention to how your body reacts to that in your run-throughs.
If you notice that you're a little more off-balance at times, take note and remind yourself to initiate your core a little more in those moments.
If you notice that you're cutting your moves short and tend to rush the choreography from the nerves, listen to the mix with earphones again, and aim to drag each move out until the very last second to sit in the pocket of the beat.
Being on deck is definitely not the time to think about specific moves – psyching yourself out by focusing too much on the details doesn't pay off!
This is the time to pump both yourself and your teammates up, remind yourselves to have fun on stage, and remember to emphasize your facials.
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Trust that your body should already have all the details down.
It's important to stay in the moment, cheer for the team before yours, and take deep, steady breaths to control the adrenaline in your system.
At this point, your mind is your greatest asset.
Use your mind and visualization to change the narrative of your nervous energy into determination to perform at your best.
With competition season just around the corner, utilize these tips to ensure that you're performing your best!Are there any other tactics you think will help overcome performance jitters? Leave a comment to let us know below!Get your choreography game on point by training on STEEZY Studio and hitting the stage will be a breeze!This article was originally published on January 6, 2015.