It doesn’t matter if you’re Dame Judi Dench or an extra just making up numbers in a smaller production – stage fright is very real and can affect anyone from the most to the least experienced of actors.
Taking acting courses for adults will help you combat your nerves but here are a few top tips to get you going the next time you find yourself treading the boards.
Centre your thoughts
Try not to think about what might go wrong – you’ll only send yourself into a panic and then it’s more likely that what you don’t want to happen actually will. Instead, think calming happy thoughts, take deep soothing breaths and perhaps try relaxation exercises like yoga, meditation and mindfulness.
If you don’t rehearse or know your lines, then it’s no surprise you might be feeling a bit anxious about opening night. Rehearse as much as you can and make sure you know your lines backwards so you know that if something does go awry it won’t be down to you.
Avoid caffeine and sugar
You don’t want a bad case of the jitters just before you go on stage as you’ll probably be feeling nervous anyway. Steer clear of coffee and sugary food and drink to help keep as calm as possible.
Before you go on stage, do a bit of limbering up to keep your muscles nice and loose. You’ll feel instantly more relaxed and this will translate once you’re on stage.
Go with it
Don’t try and fight against the nerves – it’ll only make them worse. Instead, acknowledge how you’re feeling and it’ll soon pass.