3 Tips for Fighting Performance Anxiety
Whenever I'm cast in a solo role, I'm consumed with thoughts of everything that could go wrong. Please help.
—Isabella, Philadelphia, PA
Raising the stakes with "what ifs" only heightens your anxiety. Your insecurity may stem from a lack of stage experience or low self-confidence.
The first can be overcome by putting in extra rehearsal time until the solo becomes part of your muscle memory.
Gaining confidence requires mental conditioning, such as learning to reframe negative thoughts (like "I'm going to mess up") with something positive ("I'm excited and ready to go").
Adopting a strong stage persona may also help you tap into traits that will enhance your performance—just think of what Beyoncé's alter ego, Sasha Fierce, did for her. Many of the best dancers have struggled with anxiety. You are not alone.
- Feeling Nervous? These Breathwork Exercises Can Calm Stage Fright ›
- Paralyzed by Stage Fright? 6 Ways to Beat Your Nerves - Dance ... ›
- Got Stage Fright? - Dance Magazine ›
- 7 Ways To Cope With Performance Anxiety - Dance Magazine ›
- Why You Should Embrace Your Performance Anxiety - Dance ... ›
I hate asking for money. I am tired of feeling like we, as dance practitioners, are constantly begging for every morsel of sustenance. We are often seen as the poor stepchildren of the arts, usually thought of as having nothing tangible to sell.
I have to admit, I've had a wonderful career. I've danced with The Royal Ballet and The Joffrey Ballet, done a stint on the West End in An American in Paris, played the Snow Cavalier in Disney's The Nutcracker and the Four Realms with Misty Copeland, and will soon be performing as Older Billy in the Australian tour of Billy Elliot: The Musical.
How did I get in this position? Through the eight international ballet competitions I've entered.
If you want to travel the world performing and doing what you love, competitions are your ticket to finding the freedom to dance wherever you want to go.
By the Sunday evening of a long convention weekend, you can expect to be thoroughly exhausted and a little sore. But you shouldn't leave the hotel ballroom actually hurt. Although conventions can be filled with magical opportunities, the potential for injury is higher than usual.
Keep your body safe: Watch out for these four common hazards.