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Playing in front of people
need something for nerves
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Mimi Aysha
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July 12, 2018 - 10:53 am
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Any ideas? I thought not being able to be in front of anyone was just nerves, but I'm thinking it may be a real thing, we joke about it, but I seriously change color and want to throw up at the thought of it never mind actually playing.

I mess around and I'm up for a giggle but this just terrifies me...

Apparently have to play a little concert at the end of the fiddle camp this month, I am a wreck already!...I know that no one will probably hear me, and I'm not scared of messing up but something inside me makes me feel physically sick at the thought of it.

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Scrap
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July 12, 2018 - 11:35 am
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I completely understand. Since I picked up my violin again I am scared who hears me. I never would have played the variety show if it weren't for my son. I will do almost anything for him. I was so nervous/scared, I never looked at the crowd. He did amazing, I messed up at the end. Not one person mentioned it. But since then, many people have commented on how great it was. I am glad I did it, it has given me more confidence as well as passion. Now I want to play really well the next time, redeem myself.

 

Be confident, I am sure that you are going to do amazing. Having read the forum, I know how active you are and the work that you put into the fiddle. Once you start, the music will take over and you will be a rock star! Good luck.

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Mimi Aysha
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July 12, 2018 - 8:20 pm
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Thank you Scrap! - My daughter is working up some relaxation oils for me...and hubby is supportive...I'm gonna lean on my friend as she plays in a band ...its a shame there isn't a magic pill....my kids said that I should practice in front of them, so maybe I'll give that a go too!

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damfino
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July 12, 2018 - 9:23 pm
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If you can, try small by making videos. Even making videos only you will ever see can be a challenge to work through. Move up to sharing a video. Move on to trying a short show on Streetjelly.com .... These are all things I've done, and doing these things have worked for me, though my nerves aren't totally gone when performing in front of people, they are just more tolerable, haha. When I really wanted to work hard at getting past some of my nerves I played every Sunday on Streetjelly to work through it, and it really did help. When I had to do a recital (our recitals were all just solo performances of a tune you picked out) I was able to put myself in the mindset I'd get when doing my little shows, and it did help me get work through having actual real people looking back at me, haha.

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Mark
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July 12, 2018 - 10:21 pm
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Mimi, 

Your apprehension is natural, just some back ground on me, I have played  bass and the flat top guitars, sung, taught, and spoke in public since I was 15 and have no issues in doing so, but the fiddle has caused me all kinds of issues playing in public. Only recently have I been able to relax enough to play and enjoy playing in front of people. I would try so hard I would tense up, my upper arm and have bow shakes, become irritated when I was out of tune and lose my concentration leading to losing my place in the song. First time I played the Lovers' waltz in public I blew the opening run and was just livid with my self, I had worked so had on that run only to blow it, afterwards I realized, only me and Lori, my piano player who I play with, knew I had messed up that run. What I played was on time and sounded ok for the cord progerssion that was going on, several said they loved the song and it was there favorite of the ones i had played! And here I was furious with my self for the mistake. Most people have no clue what it takes to play the fiddle.  Take a deep breath then continue to breath and play with passion for the love of playing, making music.

You'll do great!

Mark

Master the Frog and you have mastered the bow.

Albert Sammons

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
July 13, 2018 - 10:56 am
Member Since: September 26, 2010
Forum Posts: 13390

Great tips from everyone.
Here are tips that I wrote earlier:
https://fiddlerman.com/forum/critique-corner/si-bheag-si-mhor/page-3/#p48471
However, if you are too worried, visit your doctor and tell him or her what you will be doing and they will prescribe beta blockers for you. They are harmless and you need so little to actually avoid getting nervous in the slightest. As long as you are only doing it once in a while, you're good. 🙂
Inderal used to be common and doses of around 10 - 20mg will suffice for this.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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Mimi Aysha
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July 13, 2018 - 12:50 pm
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Oh thanks guys, yes I should make vids, it took me a lot of guts to make the one for here, and after I did it such a relief....it was fun, I think cause everyone here is so nice. 

Oh Mark, I would have crumbled...but you are right, a lot of people listening wouldn't even know, and I'm sure you sounded awesome. 

It's been in every situation in front of people, but I could use the fiddle as something to hide behind I guess...I'm totally OK IN a group - just not in charge of or in front of a group! - so silly I know.

My youngest daughter jumped in on me practicing last night "wow, you used to be terrible, now you are just mildly annoying!" - confidence booster!

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Mimi Aysha
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July 13, 2018 - 12:54 pm
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Thanks fm - so there is a real thing for it, I know you had told me...I'm gonna tackle this for sure...

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Mimi Aysha
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July 14, 2018 - 9:37 am
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I chatted to my mum yesterday the phone and we were giggling about embarrassing situations we shared, funny stories and such.

She recalled when I was about 12-ish and I was in the school band, I had not been able to get an instrument as my dad was sick and we couldn't make a noise when we visited him at the hospital every day after school. My teacher gave me a triangle so I could still be in the band. On our performance night I was back in the percussion area next to the drummer, who I was absolutely in love with (he didn't know I existed) but he did smile at me once or twice. Right at the end of the performance when my one note came I was just staring at the drummer and everyone was staring at me....waiting. My whole family was in the audience, I thought I was going to die, I hit that note and ran off in tears...

I blame the whole thing on the cute drummer embarassed...this could have been the moment that made my fear being in front of people with expectations that I didn't meet a reality....seems kinda silly now, I just have to get over the whole thing...seriously!!! I never take myself seriously so why should I when doing something as small as playing in a little concert, with people I will probably never see again anyways....

Oh shoot, my hubby just announced that the whole fam was showing up on the last night for the concert.....and now we are back to square 1.

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
July 17, 2018 - 1:26 pm
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LOL. Great story. Looking forward to the followup.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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Mimi Aysha
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July 20, 2018 - 10:23 am
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Thank you FM - I'm def over that part...I'm sure the drummer isn't so hot today!

My husband does voice overs and can sing a dream....he said (like everyone else does) that everyone gets nervous, even his voice goes a bit croaky for a few seconds, then it all goes away. He said that I'm pretty much in a pickle most of the time anyways, so he's like, whats new, just get in there and have fun.....He's such a sweety, I was getting in a mess with the metronome (never sure quite how to keep up with it, or when to jump in) so he sat there last night clapping his hands to the beat to show me how to play along with it.

Lorna told me that when she plays with her husband in his band, he turns the volume up and when he's not looking she runs over and turns it way down....and they go back and forth, volume up and down...cause she is scared to death too...

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
July 23, 2018 - 1:58 pm
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That sounds like me at home when I try to listen to music. LOL

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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Mimi Aysha
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July 24, 2018 - 6:34 pm
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too funny!!! - one of the teachers we met on our travels popped over last night and ran through the songs with us - she commented that both our violins sounded awesome....I had to laugh, cause it was her playing them not us!

When we are playing its a whole different story....

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Fiddlerman
Fort Lauderdale
July 25, 2018 - 3:04 pm
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Don't be so hard on yourself Mimi. 🙂 But it's nice to know that the teacher liked your violins.

"The richest person is not the one who has the most,
but the one who needs the least."

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1stimestar
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July 26, 2018 - 2:16 am
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Oh I do so remember the feeling of nausea before my first recitals.  I think it really is just a matter of practice.  I couldn't even record myself because as soon as I hit the record button, I'd mess up with nerves.  Now I am playing on stage at open mic night, playing with groups, playing in jams and having sooo much fun.  I still mess up occasionally when called out to take a solo but just make a face like "yea I meant to play that" and don't stop.  Pretty common in bluegrass and old time music lol.  Have fun and keep practicing getting in front of people, even videoing yourself.  

 

Opportunity is often missed because it wears suspenders and looks like hard work.

 

Alaska, the Madness; Bloggity Stories of the North Country

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1stimestar
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July 26, 2018 - 2:16 am
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Oh I do so remember the feeling of nausea before my first recitals.  I think it really is just a matter of practice.  I couldn't even record myself because as soon as I hit the record button, I'd mess up with nerves.  Now I am playing on stage at open mic night, playing with groups, playing in jams and having sooo much fun.  I still mess up occasionally when called out to take a solo but just make a face like "yea I meant to play that" and don't stop.  Pretty common in bluegrass and old time music lol.  Have fun and keep practicing getting in front of people, even videoing yourself.  

 

Opportunity is often missed because it wears suspenders and looks like hard work.

 

Alaska, the Madness; Bloggity Stories of the North Country

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Andrew Fryer
London, England
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September 16, 2018 - 3:13 am
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I never really enjoyed playing in front of people solo as a teenager, but the most nervous I have ever been was when recording myself on a tape-recorder!

I'm not so bad now, but I don't know if it's age or the beta-blockers!

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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BillyG
Brora, North-east Scotland
September 16, 2018 - 3:37 am
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Andrew said
.......I'm not so bad now, but I don't know if it's age or the beta-blockers!  

roflol  Yeah, magic, aren't they !   Infinitely more preferable than trying to steady-the-nerves with a few stiff drinks....

I seriously recommend not copying my mistakes. D'oh - guntohead.JPG

Please make your own, different mistakes, and help us all learn :-)

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Andrew Fryer
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September 16, 2018 - 4:18 am
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Maybe what everyone needs is a big disaster to break the ice?

I have a lousy memory, so after I've practised a piece enough times, I play it from memory but unreliably. And once I was in a piano competition playing a piece of highly syncopated Bartok (with arm-crossing and uncrossing that my teacher insisted upon) that lasted 53 seconds. I had the music in front of me but played from memory, and about 30 seconds in my mind went totally blank. It took me more than 10 seconds to find where I was in the music and then play the remaining 23 seconds. After that, I think I just didn't care any more. I didn't die. The audience didn't throw eggs. Life went on.

I always wanted to be a juvenile delinquent but my parents wouldn't let me.

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AndrewH
Sacramento, California
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September 16, 2018 - 4:48 am
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That's a great thought. I suspect that everyone who's performed in front of people has at least one of those stories.

Mine was playing in an orchestra: I accidentally threw my bow in the air while turning a page. Fortunately its trajectory was almost perfectly vertical, so it came down close enough for me to try to catch it in the air... but my first attempt knocked it into my music stand before I got hold of it. And this was in a semi-professional orchestra, playing a Tchaikovsky symphony in front of a packed house of over 700 people. There may have been a few remarks on the flying bow, but life went on.

For me, stage fright comes mostly from new performance situations. I've been very comfortable performing in front of people, even solo, for years, but when I started playing in front of a camera, the nerves came back all over again. But the nerves settle after a few performances in a new situation.

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