All by myself

It can feel pretty lonely up there at the mic, and I have found ways to avoid direct contact with the audience while I am performing. I often sing with my eyes closed. It helps me to feel the rhythm and to focus on the story of the song. Somehow, with my eyes closed I…

Inner critic, be damned!

My inner critic and I have known each other for a long time. As much as I would like to send it packing, I know that we are a part of each other. A gift from my inner critic is when I discover its limitations. Without fail, after each low moment when I let that…

Sometimes scary is okay

I did something scary today. I put myself out of my comfort zone, and it surprised me how very far out of it I felt. There is safety in numbers, and I have experienced this first hand in musical performance. When I went out busking last week, I went with a friend. We kept each…

Make the audience your friend

In my experience performing with ukulele in hand, I have found that befriending the audience helps alleviate much of the stress from being vulnerable on the stage. When I befriend the audience, I am no longer standing up there in front of a bunch of strangers. I can create a temporary community with everyone in…

Performance jitters

A musician across the proverbial pond recently sent me a message about performance. The questions she raised were perfect fodder for a dialogue, and I was honored by her words and her willingness to be vulnerable and reach out. For me, becoming comfortable with performance has been a long, bumpy ride, and even today there…