5 useful tips on how to improve your musical performance
- Breathe between musical phrases
Don’t try to sing whole song on one breath. Take your time. You are on the stage and there is no need to rush. Between musical phrases we need to take breath, in the same natural way, as we take breath when we speak, whether it is singing lesson or real performance on the stage. For example 2 or three, maximum four words you sing, then you should breathe, 2-3 words and again you breathe… Firstly, it gives natural fluency to the vocal breathing and the performance generally. Secondly, in this way, it is so easy to be more expressive with different colours in your voice. Thirdly, breathing in the right moment will make sure you don’t strangulate your voice and don’t create unnecessary tension in the area of your throat
- Use tools of expression face, body, language, arms, hands, eyes.
It is good to deliver the message of the song not only through the voice, but through the following tools of artistic expression: face, body, language, arms, hands, eyes. I suggest to experiment with each of the “tools “I have mentioned above.Remember, it is very useful to experiment with facial expression during the performance. This will help you easily to reflect the way you feel in the very moment. For example, if it is a sad song, I suggest to create a new imagination variety of different types of sens
- Create in your imagination a variety of different types of inner feelings related to the song.
As an example, let’s experiment with sensation of sadness
1. Sadness with the element of help
2. Sadness with element of grief
3. Sadness, but no regret
4. Sadness with element of joy
It is just an example. There are dozens of other the variations. More clear vision you have in your head, better your face and body will respond during the performance. The same kind of varieties you could give to all the types of feelings. It is important to be inventive and brave to experiment when you sing.
Seriously, if painter before he starts to paint, is mixing all his paints and then later he starts putting them on a paper, why can’t we then prepare our thoughts, different kind of emotions before we start singing? Ultimately, audience wants to believe in your story, if it doesn’t happen, what is the point of you singing on the stage? It is one of the first steps towards building a truly professional approach towards a great musical performance
- Work on your lyrics
Please work on the lyrics of your song thoroughly and with the highest attention to each detail. Simply print it out, take deep breath and read through it and slowly with quiet voice. Try to get to the very essence of the words… If anything needs to be translated-do it. Each word, step-by-step, only in this way, brain will have a clear image attached to the word and will create the strongest neurone connections related to the lyrics. Yes, scientists found out that we have billions of neurones in our brain but what really matters is how strong is the connection between those neurones. More thorough work is done on the text-deeper you’ll get to the essence of what the author was trying to say. More to this, deeper and stronger will be neurone connections which will lead you to the excellent performance. As a result, you are building up your artistic (public speaker, performer) confidence on a subconscious level.
- Do your research
First of all, try to find out who was the author of the text.
Secondly, why did he wrote it?
Thirdly, what have inspired him?
More willingness to explore you have, more questions will appear in your head and more answers you will get.
Fourthly, have a mirror in front of yourself, say the words of the song and involve your arms and hands, trying in your mind to deliver a message of the song also through them. Imagine that you are just speaking to someone, sharing your own life experience.
Finally, good knowledge of words, prepared the way I’ve just suggested, would inevitably bring you to a new level. This is what truly gives you more strength as an artist, not just multiple repetitions and attempts to sing the song, but a deep research of the material which you are going to share on the stage. I would even say, try to become a thinker and a poet before you are a singer.
The result which you will achieve by following these steps
To summarise, I need to add following idea. As a professional vocal coach and singing teacher, I worked with hundreds of pupils and can see clearly that by following the steps which I have described for you here above, you will inevitably achieve a very professional result. Moreover, I need to emphasise, please be patient, “learn to walk before you run”. Explore and understand the musical material which you are going to perform on a deepest level. Once you know it precisely, the outcome and ultimately, your singing will be of a very different quality.