Time for all that practice and effort to pay off!
Venue: Ringwood RSL (we have a function room booked)
Date: Sunday June 18th
Time: 5pm for under 12 performances, 7pm for everyone else
We run these gigs every 6 months or so to help students get in some performance practice and learn how to actually play for an audience.
Here's a little sneak peek of Sofia's performance with her sister Zara:
Info for fans
For parents, friends and everyone who just wants to come and watch, the under 12 performances will be starting at 5pm and will be finished by 6pm.
That gives you an hour for dinner and drinks at the venue before the rest of the performances kick off at 7pm, finishing up by 9pm all things going to plan.
It's pretty informal, but please stick around for as many performances as possible (playing to an empty room sucks - I've done it plenty of times, and that's not the lesson we want to be teaching on Sunday).
Info for performers
I'll be setting up from about 3pm, so feel free to come early to warmup and get yourself sorted (we'll also have the hour between 6pm-7pm for warmups for those performing later on).
Here's some tips to help you prepare:
Get over those nerves!
For most performers, the biggest challenge to overcome is nerves, which everyone deals with differently, but I would suggest remembering why you're performing:
- To learn how to perform and grow as a guitarist
- To show everyone your skills and the effort you've put in
- To enjoy performing! It's great fun once you get into the groove.
There's no need to worry about anything, so just take a deep breath, focus on yourself, your guitar and your music and enjoy it!
Get your gear ready
You'll probably need to tune your guitar twice before performing - once when you arrive to warmup, and once just before you play. That's ok, and it's normal, because your guitar will adjust to the temperature in the room.
If you want to stand and play, have your strap adjusted to the right height. If you have favourite picks, have a few ready (I always need spares because mine have a tendency to go walkabout).
Having a set process to go through before performing has made gigs heaps smoother (and less stressful) for me and it's good to start developing those habits early.
Allow time to warmup
Don't go crazy on this one, but try to arrive early if possible to warmup your fingers. For you advanced students, we developed personalised practice routines last month, so use them!
Just don't feel like you need to play the song a hundred times on Sunday - that will just tire you out. Warmups are just used for getting your fingers ready to play, not for improving your mastery of your performance song.
Be a performer!
You're the rockstar. You get to put on whatever type of performance you'd like, so make the most of it.
I've seen ok performances become amazing just because of a bit of fun banter between songs or a bit of audience participation, so try out any crazy ideas you've seen live yourself or you just want to try out.
My only rule is: never make excuses for your skills, performance or ability by saying something like "this is probably going to sound very bad" - that sort of talk is a big no-no.
Instead, you can say "this song was a big challenge for me to learn, so I'm looking forward to sharing it with you all tonight". This subtle shift in mindset is important both for you and your audience.
Learn from other performance
Sometimes we get so caught up in our own little world we forget to actually pay attention to everyone else!
If you see something in a performance that you really like, try to work out what it is. Is it the dynamics, the rhythm, the way they look and feel on stage?
Even better, after the show, give feedback and ask for advice from other performers, particularly focussing on the positives. Save any super critical stuff for another time (that goes for self-criticisms too!