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  1. #1
    Member Suhad's Avatar
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    Default Getting over Stage fright

    Or maybe Becoming Your Dance Name

    I still have horrible stage fright; even when being evaluated by my instructor I can feel myself forgetting simple things like standing up straight, now stiffening my arms, having strong hips -- getting up to perform in front of an audience is much worse!

    Don't get me wrong; she's a very supportive instructor, not intimidating, and honest which I need in order to get better. It's an issue with ME, not her -- but I do want to be able to share the joy this dance brings me with others, and maybe at least make enough money to cover my class expenses (costumes are my luxury treats). HOWEVER, that will never happen if I'm so nervous I make my audience nervous.

    Any suggestions, other than simply performing over and over again? Valium is not an option, my instructor already nixed that idea

  2. #2
    Senior Member Gia al Qamar's Avatar
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    Well...you answered your own question!
    Repetition of dancing in front of others (practice) will make what seems very foreign to you now very familiar.
    Right now, as a student, you're very focused on the external....your arm positions, posture, what others are doing and what they look like as they're looking at you :eek: .
    As you mature and become more confident in your dance skills, you'll be able to escape inside the music and dance freely, with your entire focus being on you, how you feel and what the music is speaking to you...
    Give yourself the gift of time...when you're ready to perform...you will.
    Before every show, I remind myself why it is that I dance...that calms me to the core...
    Gia

  3. #3
    V.I.P. Moon's Avatar
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    Dear Suhad,
    Maybe you've ever heard from "Emotional Freedom Technique"? It is a quite easy and fast technique which makes use of the bodies' natural energy system to come over fears and phobias (and also things like weight problems, addictions etc.) When applying the technique correctly, you can solve "emotional" problems within half an hour!
    I know this sounds extremely weird, but maybe you'll be interested to try it out?
    You can find more about it on this website and even download a free manual.
    Last year, I sometimes suffered from extremely negative emotions and they are almost gone now after I applied the technique only once.
    Again, I know this sounds weird and unbelievable, but there is no harm in trying it out (it even works for sceptical people) and I hope it will work for you and solve your problem.
    Last edited by Moon; 09-06-2006 at 12:59 PM.

  4. #4
    Moderator Safran's Avatar
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    The solution would be practice and practice. The more you practise your technique, the more your body will remember it and your mind will be free to enjoy and show the enjoyment to the audience. Practice with an audience - ask your friends to watch and try to concentrate more on them than worrying if you're doing something wrong or not.

    I too get stage fright every now and then... It hits me the moment I go out in front of the audience and then as I start to dance it gradually dissolves. But I've said it before and I will say it again - a small bit of nervousness or related excitement only benefits your performance. The physical side of it gives your face a nice glow and the psychological side will keep you alert and ready to adapt to different situations.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gia al Qamar View Post
    Before every show, I remind myself why it is that I dance...that calms me to the core...
    Gia
    That is such a nice thought, Gia... Maybe I should write it down somewhere on my costume bag or make-up set, so I would see and be reminded of it before every performance.

    Quote Originally Posted by Moon
    I know this sounds extremely weird, but maybe you'll be interested to try it out?
    You can find more about it on this website and even download a free manual.
    Yes, I am a bit sceptical about it. Especially with this site - I find it extremely hard to find adequate information about it. Could you please give a very short overview of what is the point of this technique?

  5. #5
    V.I.P. Moon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maariku
    Yes, I am a bit sceptical about it. Especially with this site - I find it extremely hard to find adequate information about it. Could you please give a very short overview of what is the point of this technique?
    According to EFT, the cause of all negative emotions is a disruption in the body's energy system. (For example, when a person experiences a frightening situation, the body's energy system will be disrupted which causes negative emotions every time the person is confronted with a similar situation). By tapping with 2 fingers at certain body spots, while focussing on the problem you want to address, the disruption will go away and the energy can flow freely again, and so will the emotional problems go away. EFT, just like acupuncture and reflexology, make use of so called "meridian spots" on the body.
    When I first read about it I also didn't believe it. That's because everyone thinks emotional and psychological problems take a long time to be solved, while with EFT it will only cost you 1 or a few sessions of less than 10 minutes.
    I've tried it and it worked for me.
    I let everyone decide for themselves whether they believe in it or not and want to try it or not, but I only want to say that it worked for me (while I was being sceptical) and it made me really happy.

    Also, the manual can be downloaded for free, which is for me enough proof that this is not some weirdo who wants to make money with some non-existing thing.
    Last edited by Moon; 09-06-2006 at 03:47 PM.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Gia al Qamar's Avatar
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    I have to say, I was very keen on diregarding the post about "EFT", but in reading your explanation, I have to say that it's appears to me to be a reinvention of an ancient practice.
    I wrote earlier that, before taking the stage, I remind myself about why I dance...what I didn't mention was that I touch the bindi at the center of my brow as I do this...it is a physical manefestation, a way to focus my internal thoughts externally. The practice of doing this is actually quite ancient...a lot of performers have a 'ritual' that they do or a luck charm that they incorporate into their pre-show routine. Same thing...
    Gia

  7. #7
    Moderator Yshka's Avatar
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    Hi Suhad, and everyone else,

    Good topic. I also felt like bringing it up when it was addressed in another thread for I suffer from stagefright too.
    My case is kind of weird. I get stagefright BEFORE I have to go on stage. When on stage it seems to go down a bit, but most of the time it results in extremely shaking hands. It's like: i kind of feel fright'ish, and my hands start shaking. Sometimes I don't even feel the fright thing but my hands just shake.
    I haven't performed loads of times, but I seem to feel that the hand shaking doesn't go away. I start feeling better at every performance that goes well, but still even if I don't feel scared, my hands get shaky.
    I also experience this when speaking in front of an audience, or even being watched by my teacher (though she's amazing and she is the only person I'd ever want watching and then evaluating me).
    The weird thing is I also start feeling stagefright'ish when I know for sure that there is no need to. I still feel scared though I also feel I have no reason to.

    Quote Originally Posted by Maariku
    But I've said it before and I will say it again - a small bit of nervousness or related excitement only benefits your performance.
    I agree, but in a very few occasions it got worse.. I hated it, and a few times it affected my performance as well (like once I felt so awful I got a terrible stomach ache which was to be read from my face at that moment..) This doesn't happen much, to be honest that was the worst thing I ever experienced for that matter, but I felt I really needed something that calms me down before a performance.

    I have tried a few things: I make sure that I feel totally secure about my looks and costume and that I know my choreo by heart (in a wake-me-up-sometime-at-night-and-i'll-dance-it-for-you sort of way), I try to have fun with my troupemates, teacher, friends, whoever is there with me for the moment that could possibly make me feel better, before a performance. I also try to do what Gia does (good point Gia!), telling myself why I dance, and also what it has done for me. And make sure I visit the little girls room before going on stress makes me want to pee...

    Still there are times I feel even that is not enough.
    Moon, I've just downloaded the EFT manual. I am so going to try it. I must say I am a bit sceptical about it but let's say I'm open to it.

    As for a dance name, I'd love to have one for real, but I don't like the idea of picking it myself. I think if I had a dance personality to kind of 'become' when performing I could let goat least a bit of all the stress.. plus it sounds cool

  8. #8
    Senior Member taheya's Avatar
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    oooh thanks for the link moon, im certainly going to give it a go!

  9. #9
    V.I.P. Moon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Taheya
    oooh thanks for the link moon, im certainly going to give it a go!
    No problem
    My first thought when I read approximately half of the manual: "The whole world should know this!!!"

  10. #10
    V.I.P. Aisha Azar's Avatar
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    Default Stage Fright

    Dear Suhad,
    I have terrible stage fright, even after all this time. I try to look at it is a positive instead of a negative and think about how much extra adrenaline is in my body, how it is making me aware of every musicle and fine tuning my senses to every nuance in the music. I try to envision it as a valuable performance asset instead of thinking how queasy my stomach is or how much I feel shaky.
    I find that after a few minutes on the stage or in front of the class or whatever, then I begin to put it to good use and when I am concentrating on those positibved mentioned above, then the "fright" part begins to leave and I feel energized instead.
    REgards,
    A'isha

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