Thursday, June 26, 2014

Anatomy of a winner

So last night was the finale of the Rehoboth Idol contest at the Blue Moon.  Like the TV show, it is not just a singing competition, its also a performance competition.  I won this contest in 2011.  You can read about it and see photos/videos of week 1, week 2, week 3, and the finale.

As a former winner of this contest and as an experienced performer, here are my tips for winning a singing/performance competition:

  1. Song choice - you can be the best technical singer out there, but your song choice can make or break you.  Pick a song you like a lot but is largely unknown by the judges/audience, and you'll have a tough time getting them to connect with you.  Pick a song everyone likes and is familiar with and the audience will feed you energy.
  2. Preparation - know all the lyrics, and know all the verses in the correct order.  Singing live is very different than singing along with the radio.  Nothing takes the place of adequate rehearsal.
  3. Make the song your own - don't try to impersonate the original artist because you won't sound genuine.  Switch up the melody just a little, and draw on your emotions to infuse your singing with authenticity.
  4. Use the stage - don't sing behind a microphone stand!  Take the mic in your hand and use the entire width of the stage to make eye contact with the audience.  Incorporate tasteful gestures and dance moves where appropriate.
  5. Project confidence - almost every performer, regardless of fame/experience, gets nervous.  Don't let your nerves get the best of you.  Tell yourself "I've got this!" and take a deep breath before going on stage in order to project confidence.
I used this criteria to informally coach 1 of the contestants.  While all the contestants did some or several of these things, Brian was the only 1 to do all 5 of them.

He won!!
Brian & the judges, some contestants, and the club owners

Brian  & his boyfriend Oscar

4 comments:

MAC said...

WOW! I had no idea you were a singer. I love American Idol and I'm so impressed that you competed in a talent show... now that's ballsy. I enjoy singing, but I've never sang in public. I've been thinking about taking vocal lessons... we'll see. Thanks for sharing!

Jay M. said...

WOW! So very cool! I can't imagine doing this. Even with a winner coaching me! Neat post! Coolness all the way around.

Peace <3
Jay

anne marie in philly said...

@MAC - mark is a GREAT singer! I saw him perform at the "blue moon" in rehoboth. and the audience just ate it up!

Ur-spo said...

cool beans !