How does a performer build their self esteem?
Leontine Hass is a West End theatre performer and vocal coach to the stars. She has imparted confidence to hundreds of singers, artists, actors and performers of all types through her productions, professional workshops and lessons.
We asked Leontine to share steps to confidence:
This is only my opinion of course, but here is a list of practical things which can be done and which, I have come to believe through experience, work:
1. Be prepared and practice
Preparation and practice are not elusive concepts. They are something you can do, no matter how you feel about yourself.
2. Take sanctuary
Let your work be your sanctuary rather than the place to avoid.
3. Feed your passion
Be creative with your material and explore other repertoire, other artists, other genres, go to concerts, share with other creatives, dream about possibilities.
4. Take any chance to perform
Performance takes practice. The more you do it the better you become at it.
5. Carpe Diem
When an opportunity comes your way grab it with both hands and ride the wave. Don’t let it pass. Opportunities are rare gifts. If you ignore them until a time ‘when you are feeling more confident in your ability’, they may pass you by. Accept that you may never feel consistently confident and get out there and do what you need to do in spite of feeling insecure.
Learn to understand and accept your good and bad days. Think about what you do to sabotage yourself. Do you procrastinate when you feel overwhelmed? Whatever negative habits you have, be onto yourself. Break a large task down into smaller tasks and write lists. Simply get them done. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time!
7. Appreciate your quiet, awkward, nerdy, uncool traits
Being cool is overrated. Make friends with your demons, sit with your fears, and then get on with what you have to do.
8. Understand that experience takes time
Challenge the idea that your next song needs to be perfect or your next performance needs to be flawless. All great artists have had many failures. In fact they have probably had more failures. That is why they have succeeded in the end.
9. Be creative
Play, play with your music, sculpt a beautiful sound, bring yourself to your performance rather than hide behind it, play, explore, try things.
10. Aim to increase your success rate
…rather than aim to be perfect at all times. If 5 out of 10 gigs are good then that is not bad. Work your way up slowly. Allow yourself to fail, get up, dust yourself off and start again. Learn to laugh about it.
These 10 steps are an excerpt of Leontine’s important article: Confidence Undressed
Leontine Hass BA, Melb. Uni, BMus. Kings College London, Dip. RAM is a singer, actress, vocal coach, Director of The Associated Studios and WAM.Co (The Word and Music Company) and a contributor to The Ultimate Guide to Singing. As a vocal coach, Leontine has a busy private practice comprising professional singers and recording artists.