The Stagecraft Specialist
Engage from stage;
Stagecraft for musicians is movement coaching to move your audience
When we move our audience, they are moved to tell their friends, buy the merch and help support us making music.
You, as the artist, make the creative choices that mean your performance communicates what you want it to.
The alternative? To leave it up to ‘what happens in the moment’ – which might not amplify what you mean it to…
If you want to engage your audience from stage, you can get an understanding how your use of stage space and gesture affects your audience. It’s about learning tools so that you, the performer, can make choices about how you want to perform instead of leaving it to chance. It’s about having artistic control.
- We plan a performance the same way we plan and rehearse for a song.
- As musicians, we are artists, and as artists, we are looking for authentic communication that resonates with both the artist and the audience.
- If we leave it to chance, at best, we don’t get the most out of our performance (like not practising your instrument or rehearsing for a performance, you can ‘wing it’, but you know it’s not your best). At the other end of the scale we can ‘leak’ our nonverbal communication to tell the audience how nervous we feel, instead of the content of the song.
I met Zerafina when I was a semi-finalist in the Telstra Road To Discovery competition. I was quite nervous for my performance as I some times felt a little awkward on stage. I also had a habit of walking on stage and acting like I was a big awkward on purpose as not to feel “above” or superior to the audience.
Zerafina taught me some wonderful, quick tricks that surprisingly helped dramatically!
My favourite being the power pose and the way to scan the audience with your eyes as you walk out on stage. Both of these techniques made a huge impact on both myself and the audience. I was setting myself up to be the music version of myself. It felt better to look at getting on stage as acting. So I could be the anyone I wanted – my ultimate self – and not be afraid of looking egotistical. After all, Zerafina reminded me that the audience wants to feel empowered by seeing how much I enjoy and am proud of being on stage. My family were in the audience of this performance and noticed a change as soon as I stepped on stage and scanned the room with my head held high. They were shocked!
Zerafina is a tremendous help if anyone needs that confidence boost on stage. It’s about sharing the story of our music in the best way possible through body language as well as the song itself. It’s not about choreographed moves! I highly recommend Zerafina’s techniques and advice to any performer. – Merpire (Rhiannon Atkinson-Howatt), Winner of the Telstra Road to Discovery competition 2015
Here is a wrap-up from the 2015 AusAca Australian National a cappella competition masterclass:
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