How can you make sure your audience can connect emotionally to your performance?
Practise time is spent crafting your interpretation of the music. Each detail is carefully thought through. Translated into physical gestures. You want to know your audience are going to hear every detail. Experience your musical tale.
When you live stream it can be harder to read the virtual room. To feel the group energy.
You might also be worried about elements out of your control. Temperamental internet connections. Forcing your performance to freeze mid-play, or disappear.
You also want your audience to experience the best quality audio on their side. But you don’t control what sound system your audience uses.
Then there are the interruptions that your audience faces being online. Alerts, beeps and vibrations.
Despite these potential obstacles, there is a way to rise above them and move your audience to tears.
The Power Of Music
Music has a powerful effect on our minds. Or rather our minds use music to powerful effect.
There are amazing examples of how music has helped people with Parkinsons, Alzheimers and depression. I was moved to tears on hearing the beautiful story of Paul Harvey. A Music teacher who has Alzheimers. He could still improvise a beautiful piece of music.
Your mind can use music to increase dopamine. Reduce your heart rate. Lower your blood pressure.
Then there’s the spark of creativity, imagination, recollection to help us feel more human.
This extraordinary impact isn’t focused on high-quality audio or visuals. It’s about experiencing music in any form.
You can bring an audience to tears, without knowing you have done so. Recently I was invited to perform for the closing of an online conference/workshop. I chose the Prelude from the G Major Cello Suite by J.S. Bach. It expressed the journey of the workshop. Ups, downs, aha moments, leading to a celebration. You can watch the performance here.
I had the same nerves, doubts and excitement I get for in-person performance. This gave me my performance energy. I couldn’t read the zoom room faces as I performed. Put the response after was amazing. Have a look below:
Much of an in-person performance did happen online. It takes a different format.
In the online space, we have to be ready to give responsibility to our audience. To trust them that they will be able to connect and feel something. There are ways we can help them with this. Set the scene. Create an environment where people feel open to receiving your performance.
3 Ways To Improve Emotional Connection
1. Build relationships with your audience before the performance. I’ve spoken about this a few times. There is a journey from following you, to buying a ticket. Spend time engaging with your audience through your online content. They will start to care more. When they care more, they are willing to invest emotionally. Your performance will be received openly. With trust. Like a friendship.
2. Share your insights before your performance. The discoveries you’ve made and how that has influenced your interpretation. Pointing out to the audience what to listen for and its possible meaning. Live stream audiences love to learn.
3. Engage during your performance. In the beginning, at the end and between pieces. Ask your audience questions, answer them, say hello, say goodbye. Mention them by name. Look at the camera. This all helps your audience feel connected and invested in your event. As you play they are going to receive your performance.
Performing online and in-person are different. But you can communicate with your audience in both. As a performer, the energy you use has to come from within. You can judge the outcome by engaging with your audience. During and after the performance. Building relationships and sharing insights beforehand will help increase the chances of your audience receiving your performance
You can create this without spending lots on fancy audio and visual equipment. Connecting with people instead.
Minds turn music into a powerful effect. Trust your audience to be able to do this.
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