Being that today marks the day Christy Taronno and myself open our beloved, Bizarro Obscure at the Montreal Fringe Festival; It’s time for my yearly pep talk. Last year, I published my first successful blog post, Top 10 Things Solo Lady Performers Need to Know Before Hitting the Stage. Which really, was just a to-do list I made for myself.
So here is my yearly personal pep talk to you, to myself, to my collaborators and to my friends who are daring enough to get onstage with the words that you wrote and believe in…
Let’s pre-phase this, with this quote:
“Release judgements about yourself and others, and focus on the love and light that is within everyone.”
1. You have all the control Even though Mike Delamont will always be the infamous ‘God’ to Fringers across North America. When you’re creating, you will always be the God of your own show or performance. You made it. You’re doing it. It’s your creation. It’s your mouth saying those words. Your body doing that choreography. Take control of it. Tune in to that freedom that you have created for yourself, and enjoy it.
2. Love your audience I don’t care if you’re performing for your dead weight, lazy german shepherd on a rainy afternoon, you love the shit out of that animal. If someone has chosen to take the time to come see you perform. Love them, love them, love them, LOVE THEM. If you remember this throughout your performance, it will make the experience better for everyone. More importantly, it will show in your work.
3. Love yourself Biebs said it himself. You should go and love yourself. Even though that song is a horrible example for this bullet point. My Momma does like you. She’s a very loving lady. I always think that line feels like a complete slap in the face in that song. Anyways, if you need some examples of different ways you can say I love you to yourself… then here are some of my favourites, that yes- I do say to myself on the reg…
“You ARE the little engine that could”, “KEEP SWIMMING”, “YOU’RE A BEAUTIFUL SUNSHINE PRINCESS”, “YOU’RE A LOVE MACHINE, SHOW THEM THAT”, “BE THE CHEERIO”, “YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE THE BRIGHTEST CRAYON IN THE BOX, JUST BE A CRAYON OUTSIDE OF THE BOX”. Feel free to use any, or all. You are welcome.
4. Don’t take yourself too seriously There is a big difference between taking your work seriously, and taking yourself seriously. Think about that. In my experience, taking yourself too seriously means not giving yourself any room for error. Which isn’t fair. Things happen sometimes. You will never be perfect. Taking your work seriously means prepping appropriately. Drinking water. Stretching. Running lines. Basically, trying your best. Allow yourself to be a human, don’t take yourself too seriously.
5. Fun is the most important thing. This is a total copy off of bullet point 10 of last years blog post. But it will forever be the most important thing about performing. It’s why we do it. It’s why we make press releases and websites, and why we work our BUTTS off to get the opportunity to do what we do in the first place. To have fun. Don’t forget to have that. When you’re up there it’s not up to the audience to give you a good time. It’s not up to you to give the audience a good time either. (Well it kinda is). But most importantly, it’s up to you to get yourself off. To give yourself a good time. Spread your wings kid, have fun, and you’ll go far.
6. Happy performing to all, and to all a glorious Fringe.