Being onstage is tough! Just getting up onstage is only half the battle. I’ve seen plenty of people that like public speaking really struggle onstage. That’s because there is an art to it. I learned how to be good be watching others that were good. Here are a few tips I picked up:
Know the first and last things you are going to say before you get up there
If you aren’t following a specific script and you are going off the cuff, make sure you know where you are setting some boundaries up. It’s like a map, you need to know where you are going to start, and where you are going to end.
Don’t try to copy someone else’s on stage personality… just be yourself. Stick to your own humor. This is your opportunity for all the students in your group to get to know YOU a little bit better. Don’t waste it by trying to be someone you think is more entertaining.
If you think you are being too energetic, you aren’t
There is a BIG difference between being in front of a camera and being onstage. When you are on stage, you need to bring energy. Amplify yourself. This note is perfect if you are running a game or doing an intro to the service. Turn it on. Don’t be afraid to go big.
Be mindful of your body
Sometimes your body can speak just as loud as your words. Just keep your body language in mind as you are up there. Ask yourself questions like, “is my back to the audience?,” “is the shadow from my baseball hat blocking out my face?,” “what am I doing with my hands?” etc.. Little things like that make a BIG difference.
Phrasing is everything
Watch what you say carefully. For example, there is a big difference between, “If you haven’t met me yet, my name is John” and “If I haven’t met you yet, my name is Colton.” The first makes it sound like it is up to them to come and meet me. The second makes me sound like it is my responsibility and that I want to meet them. This note is especially for the people that like to “make it up as they go.”
Have fun up there!
If you’re not having fun, they aren’t having fun. It is far more important to focus on being fun than being funny. When you do games, keep in mind that you are creating memories with your youth group. Laugh with each other. Don’t freak out when things don’t go as planned. Laugh at the hiccups. Just have a great time.
Timing is huge
When you are onstage, you have to be paying attention to the clock. I think we will agree that we would never want our stage time to “drag” or be boring. Always look out for ways to tighten up your time by cutting out unnecessary sentences and filler talk. Have a rough idea on how long the segments of your stage spot should take and stick to it.
What else would you add?
JG & Colton