So pubs are open but our gig diaries are still very much closed. It’s been such a difficult time and remains to be just that for a lot of performers. I know it might feel like it now but gigs aren’t gone forever and you’ll be setting up and sound checking before you know it! So it’s time to start the final preparations for retuning to gigs and if you’re honest, how much have you really ticked off your “Lockdown To Do List”? So let’s define it, refine it and get you at the top of your game!
Now obviously each performer is different, your prep list will look pretty different to mine and it can feel a bit daunting to start from scratch, so here are the 4 sections I use to plan out my schedule and prep for gigs:
Whether it’s vocals, piano, guitar, dance, acting, magic, every skill has a level of technique. Decide on 3 techniques that you’re going to focus on. For example, for singers this could be breath control, vocal projection and improv skills. Choose the techniques that are going to improve your skill and confidence specifically for live performance.
Use this time to learn new songs and improve your current set. This is as much for yourself as it is your audience, we get bored so easily especially as creative people. So decide on a few new songs that you can’t wait to perform as well as rehearse any tricky sections of current songs you’ll be keeping in your set. Then when you come to your first gig back, your confidence will be through the roof you will Bring. The. House. Down!
Is there anything you need? Is there anything you want to upgrade? Do you need any cases, bags, anything to help set up/pack down and ensure you look as professional as possible when arriving at venues? Go through your equipment, clean it up and organise it.
I also like to write a gig checklist that I use for every gig. Yes we all have our own routine the day of a gig but there’s nothing worse than turning up and realising you’ve left something at home. You might not have done it yet but there’s always a first time and the stress it brings is horrible! Write up a gig checklist of everything you need, you may need different checklists for different types of gigs, but the peace of mind it gives you on the way to the venue is worth every second you spend writing it up.
I also include clothing in my equipment section, having the right outfit for the right venue can change someone’s performance completely so it might be time to consider freshening up your gig closet…
And last but most definitely not least, what is all this preparation if you don’t have any gigs to prepare for? This is where networking comes in! Use this time to improve your website, your socials, your business cards and let people know you’re looking for gigs. Start contacting venues, chatting with other performers, join Facebook groups specific to your type of performance and get involved on Social Media so people know who you are, that you’re awesome at what you do and that you’re looking for gigs!
So there you go! Hopefully using these 4 sections will help bring some clarity when planning your prep schedule for returning to gigs.
Be sure to let us know if there’s anything we can help you with and we promise you, we’ll all be back on those stages before we know it, so get prepping!
Principal Dani x