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Stage Fright!

by Lauren Fairweather • 3,843 views

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I still have stage fright a little. I performed in front of people as a soloist for the first time last May. I got a solo in my 8th grade year for the choir pop show. I do this weird thing when I'm trying to sing in front of people where my throat will kind of close off in the middle of my singing for a second so I do this weird swallow/cough thing and it's really embarrassing. So there were a lot of popular girls attending the concert and I was really scared and during the first chorus that thing happened and I freaked out a bit but I guess after that I was like "hey that's done" and I sang a lot more confidently throughout the rest of the song. Thankfully I am part of a choir as a Freshman that 1st of all is only girls (which always helps... I've never been in a mixed choir but probably will be in a year or two...) and second of all I absolutely love my choir director and she is like "these girls are not going to judge you" and she's really super nice, but I still get stage fright, which is annoying because things like this happen: just yesterday one of my best friends Alaina, who is also in choir with me, got a short solo in one of the pieces. Ms. Gackle (director) was asking people to sing a certain part of the song and I assumed it was just so she could hear our different sounds and such so I didn't raise my hand to sing but it turns out she was trying to choose a solo, so I was sad. She doesn't have stage fright at all because she performs in front of the entire student ministry at her church every Sunday. I would love to start writing Wizard Rock and other book/fandom-related music and so hopefully I will be able to overcome my stage fright soonish... Sorry that droned on for a lot longer than I thought it would... ~Autumn
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I've had a couple of experiences that were similar, although they were related to public speaking rather than performing. I had a teacher in high school who emphasized public speaking and made a point of tearing us to shreds so we'd realize the worst had already happened (painful but effective) and a boss in undergrad for a public speaking heavy job who was very publicly and harshly critical if we appeared nervous at all. Once I'd realized that I would survive, it wasn't so bad.
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For some reason public speaking was a lot worse than being on stage for me too. When I was in elementary school it was SO much worse than it is for me now. I remember, like, in fifth grade, I got nervous even when my teacher was asking me questions in front of the class.
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You know you are a HUGE fan when you watch a video within 10 minutes of it being posted! LOVE YOU! YOU ARE SO AMAZING!!!!!!
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Lauren, you are lovely and open and honest.
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I have terrible stage fright. I seem really confident but I am terrified of being made a fool of. i have nightmares of saying something stupid or messing up and looking stupid. I'm petrified of being called an idiot or stupid.
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I've always been really nervous singing in front of people (though I haven't done it many times at all). Like the idea of people hearing my singing voice just seemed so bizarre to me. Putting up videos of my singing and playing on youtube definitely helped with the self consciousness, though playing in front of an audience is definitely a lot different!
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My stagefright was shaken out of me as well. More literally than figuratively but at least I'm less scared now! Drama 1, freshman year, I had to present a monologue. It was the last one before our final exam. I started shaking so badly. I'd realized that if I put all my weight on my left heel, I would stop shaking. Well, that didn't work and I nearly fell over. By the time the final exam came around I was fed up with it but still scared. I ended up not shaking at all though.
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I really never have stage fright. The last time I remember is this year's fall play. I guess I was kind of angry before I went onstage, though. It was understudy night, and the person I was understudying flat out did not show up for my performance. Not even to help with crew, since our cast was so small that we were our crew.
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Oh my goodness Lauren, I am in love with those new glasses. I know you already made a video about them but I just wanted to say how much I like them. Every time I audition for anything, I shake like CRAZY. Sometimes I still sound good, but I shake so much no matter what. I've gotten a little better at controlling it.
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I've never really been one to have stage fright, at least not once I actually get in front of people. I usually freak out before hand, worry that I won't get things right, imagine all the ways I could mess up, blank on whatever I'm supposed to be doing, but usually once I get on stage something else takes over and I remember that I've got this, I've worked on this, and it's gonna be fine. I'm very excited that you've been making videos lately cause I've missed them. =)
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hey- not being mean or anything but how come you always right on all your comments that your anxious and depressed and everything? Im just saying cause if you tell yourself something like that your just going to believe it, why dont you get counselling or speak to someone about it. It worked for my friend and now shes come so far shes like a whole different person! :)
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my mum told me a story about how she wet herself on stage because she was so nervous. now that is stage fright for you!
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You were on fire at LeakyCon! I couldn't tell you were nervous at all. stage fright sucks. I'm first chair in band but I have never been very confident with my playing. I've gotten much better as a player in the past 7 years but I still get nervous when a solo comes up and ask my stand partner to play it with me. The best cure I've found is to not care. It sounds bad but music is something that I do for fun and nothing else. So if I'm just in it for a good time I don't freak out from pressure.
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Last year I went to a choir camp with my friend. One of the things you had to do was pick a song, and sing it. So my friend and I did a duet. We sang You Can't Stop the Beat from Hairspray. We were so confident during practices and rehearsals, but when it finally came time for us to go onstage and perform, we blew it. Instead of me starting off the song with the first verse, I sang the second. When I realized this, I just stopped and buried my face in my hands. But I now know just to go on:)
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I get horrible stage fright! Thanks for the advice and sharing.
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I want to be you when I grow up :'D
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stage fright kept me from singing for well over 10 years. what helped me get over it is realizing that whether I'm good or bad, no one is gonna care. Also, being overly prepared helps. I find I'm more nervous about things I'm not completely rehearsed on.
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and I've definitely gotten similar experiences...I shake uncontrollably and my voice isn't the same as I'd usually like it and wah it's frustrating. But you're right, the more you practice singing in front of people, the better it gets. You're a natural now! :)
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I could listen to you talk all day.
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It depends on the show. You have to look at the information for each show on the tour dates page. The Facebook events you can RSVP to also have information about the shows including ticket prices. Most are free, some are $5, a few are $10, and two require registration for the conferences I'm playing at.
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As far as my stage fright goes, I like to make the joke that I'm like an electron- I change upon being observed (you know, b/c electrons go crazy when you measure them kinda?) I just never feel like I sound as good when I sing or play piano in front of people as I do when I'm alone, and I don't know what to do about it. It's not so much stage fright as stage droop if you know what I mean. I guess I just lose confidence in front of an audience
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I got involved in theater, I was cast in the first play I auditioned for. Also taking public speaking courses really helped me out of my shell.
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Oh my gosh! The return of the vocal workshop stories! I haven't heard you talk about this in YEARS! Very nice to hear you sharing these stories again! And the glasses look amazing!
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Will you be selling the Hedwig plushies at Leaky?
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As a music student i've had to perform a lot but i've never really had a problem with stage fright, you just have to be able to put all the pressure out of your mind and accept that mistakes and so on are just a part of performing. Everyone hits a bad note her and there but the barrier that needs crossed is to embrace those mistakes and keep going because if you keep going confidently in spite of mistakes and the like it will be fine. It is admittedly a bigger challenge with singing though.
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I really appriciate this video. I am presenting at a conference in two wees and i have been freaking out a lot lately.
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Gah! That Hedwig plushie is ADORABLE! =) As for stage fright, it doesn't happen to me often. If it does, it's usually a moment where I'm on stage and realize "OMG I'm on stage!" but then I realize I'm in the middle of saying something or singing and I shift my focus back to that before I can freak out. That being said, I do remember one of my shoes flinging off across stage in the middle of a dance number once. That was terrifying.
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A Kayley, Hayley, and Lauren video all in the same day? If Kristina posts tonight, I'm going to die from 5AG awesomeness overload.
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Lauren, you were so so amazing at Leaky. I remember tearing up during "It's Real For Us" because that song and the atmosphere were just too perfect. Can't wait to see you work it at Leaky again this year<3
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Lauren! This really helped me, like, a lot. I have crazy stage fright and this inspired me to try out for our school's play/musical next year. You are awesome and I always get super excited when you make a new video, because they're always awesome! -R
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Every time you talk about your past and a lot of the hard stuff you've been through, I want to go back in time to give a hug to that younger more vulnerable version of you. I'm happy it made you the person you are now, but I wish there was a way for you to get there without all the suffering. PS Awesome shirt.
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i was a band kid through middle and high school AND college and solo work always freaked me out because with instruments, sometimes things that go wrong are totally out of your hands and uncontrollable. that was always the worst. but, i got over it eventually [for the most part] and didn't even notice. definitely one of those practice makes perfect moments. i've mentioned this to you before, but your leaky performance was one of my top three moments of the con this summer. <3
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There's nothing like scary high schoolers to help you overcome your fears!
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I've always had stage fright, I remember one time having to memorize a couple paragraphs and I completely blanked out at one part and stood there silent for moments. I felt so embarrassed. It wasn't until my junior year - where my teacher made us present an essay each quarter - that I finally became more comfortable in front of my peers.
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I think experience is the only way I got over stage fright. Not that I ever had it very badly, but it's just that after going on stage again and again and again, the extreme nervousness just fades away. When I did theatre, we always said that a bit a nerves were conducive to a good performance, as well.
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I never remember being frightened on stage, but I've been dancing since I was 5 and have done so many presentations. I do remember being really nervous for my first practical exam - not mentally, but just physically I was shaking. I also tend to get sick when I'm nervous, even if I feel mentally calm before exams and stuff. I think feeling really prepared can also help with things like stage fright (gives you more confidence).
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Is that a winged key necklace? :)
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Love this! I'm going to be singing on stage for the first time this summer, and it's going to be a big audience. I just signed up for voice lessons to try and get started soon and avoid panicking on stage.
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I'm so sad that you aren't coming to Texas on your tour. :(
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Personally I can either perform whilst dying of nerves, or I can turn it off and feel nothing. Neither of these is what I want, seeing as when I feel nothing (even though it sounds better) its no fun for me. I HAVE NO IN BETWEEN hahahaa oh well I guess just breathing and practice :) Also Lauren just saying the word "Tuesday" made me smile :P <3
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Stress is a physical experience too. So strange how intellectually you can be totally fine, and physically you can be a total wreck.
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i get nervous public speaking..when i was making a speech at church..i started getti g so nervous that i was hand drumming on the podium..so i understand. see ya in July! - ritt
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Every time you put up a new video I get all excited for LeakyCon again - can't wait to see you - and thanks! :)
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Thanks for reminding me that I had to practice for a solo audition for choir. :)
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I've pacticed ballet since i was 6, so I'm usually nervous in the useful way. But I just started Musical Theatre and the first time I had to sing a song alone for the teacher my voice just wouldn't behave! I was singing AVPS's Coolest Girl because I had practice with it, but I didn't sound anyway near how I usualy do, specially at the beginning. The fact that the karaoke I found was terrible didn't help :(
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Honestly, my way to overcome stage fright was, realizing that when I'm on Stage, I'm in Power not the audience..& it's not really me it's whatever character I was acting. & when I sing (very insecure about my voice) I make a fool of myself before hand, tell a horrible joke, or something outrages to calm me. I also learned how to ACT having confidence, rather than having confidence...it helps. A lot. for me, as an actress. Everyones differen't.
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I love your smile at the end, such a happy way to end a video :)
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I hate talking in front of a crowd, it's terrifying. That's why I'm glad I'm an actor, I rarely have to go in front of a crowd, only the characters I play do.
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I wish you could come to Dallas on one of your tours!! You're videos never fail to make me smile :)
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You are SO welcome! I am a HUGE fan of yours! I love your music, and just think you are, in a general sense, awesome!
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do you still need postcards/wall decore? i'm seeing some empty space ;)
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Twenty-sixth view, third like, fifth comment. XP
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I always get nerveous but I've had to teach myself that no one wants to see fail... so I should just go out there and give'em what they want.
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