Performances can be solos or group efforts. Tunes can be old favorites or something different; the best ones are the ones you like best. Sometimes simple arrangements are the most powerful and sometimes you want to show off a fancier arrangement—your choice.
Or if you don’t want to play an instrument or do something musical, how about reading a favorite poem or doing a soliloquy from your favorite play.
For best results, start planning your Open Stage performance now! Here are a few tips:
- Choose someone else to perform with if that would make you more comfortable.
- Start simply (to give those performance jitters a few seconds to calm).
- Practice starting a little slow. It’s easy to pick up the pace but harder to slow it down once you get going.
- If you’re playing a tune 2 or 3 times, vary it a little each time. People will hear the difference and be interested in it, even if they don’t know exactly what was different.
- Practice. Practice some more. Practice with feeling. Practice having fun.
- If you’re playing your own arrangement, record yourself and listen to be sure it sounds the same way it does in your head.
- Practice the simplest form of the melody so that if you forget where you are (in spite of all that practicing) you can keep going.
- Practice keeping going even when you forget things or make mistakes.
- Practice the last few measures so you’ll be sure to nail that last note.
- Practice finishing, smiling, and recognizing the audience’s appreciation of your work.
Take advantage of the Open Stage at this year’s festival. Have fun and learn a whole different angle to your music and creative process.
For more information or to sign up for Open Stage, ask Festival staff at the Registration Desk during the Festival.