The following “performance tips for singers” are courtesy of Los Angeles vocal coach and professional singer, Teri Danz. If you sing, we strongly encourage you to go to Teri’s website, www.teridanz.com and sign up for her free monthly publication, The Singer’s Newsletter.
1. Command the stage. This is why your stance is so important. your body language and ability to stay centered, stay planted and calm tells you audience on a nonverbal level that you are in control of the stage. Always stand center stage when you deliver an important message (such as the top of the chorus).
2. Have reverence for what you are saying. Don’t throw away phrases and end notes. If you are dancing, stop to address your audience when you sing. There is power in the contrast between motion and stillness.
3. Don’t hide. Be present in the song. Even if you drift momentarily or get distracted, get back to the song as soon as possible.
4. Have an open body stance. Standing straight, shoulders down, head and jaw relaxed, and head straight forward, eyes open (focused on a point), arms relaxed and wide. Watch Bono, Jagger and Aretha to get the idea.
5. Open your eyes. It is NOT more emotional for your audience if your eyes are closed. Your audience identifies with you through your eyes, gestures and outward expression of your inward thoughts.
6. Remain calm. If there are mistakes, “Act as if” everything is part of the act. Don’t allow your audience to know that you have made a mistake, are having vocal problems, can’t hear yourself, etc. It is your job to be professional.
7. Get a vocal technique, and learn to stay on pitch so that you are confident in your singing.
8. Work out your set list. Have a song order and how it will flow, when you will speak, and what you are going to say.
9. That said, be flexible with your set list. Have alternatives ready to go in case you’re feeling congested & can’t hit the top end, or you get an energy going with the audience.
10. Get it down. Rehearse what you’ll be doing well enough to let go of it onstage.
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