As singers we’ve all been there. That breath we’ve forgotten to take, the words that despite our practice have slipped our minds, and many other little blunders that have left us in an immediate moment of shock, that is quickly accompanied by panic. It is in these moments, as singers, we must think. This is not the time to lose one’s cool and give up, thinking that the performance is now at a loss. Instead, here are a few tips to help you if you ever find yourself in this kind of predicament.
What is the worst thing to do if I mess up while singing?
The worst thing to do when you have made a mistake while singing is stopping. Once you have stopped singing the audience will also be clued in on the mistake you have made. This is not the time to lose your cool, but rather to make this blunder work in your favor. As well as to make your performance more memorable, in a way that is unique to your style.
“Oh, no I forgot to breath!”
A common mistake we make while singing is forgetting to breath, leading us to run out of air. When this happens we can rework it to our favor. Make this slip up appear as if it was intentional, an intention to add dramatic tension to the piece you are performing. This may appear to the audience that you are trying to convey an emotion in the song and will make you appear emotionally connected to the piece, creating an intimate moment in the mind of the audience rather than awkward blunder delivered by the performer.
How did that line go again…?
Despite hours of practice, we can sometimes forget the words to a piece we are performing. If this happens, hopefully we can glide over this flub, having it go unnoticed by the audience. However, if this happens to not be the case, we must now go on the offensive to render this mistake we have made. If this type of mistake is made and is notable there are a few things we can do to fix it.The most important thing to do in this situation is to smile. Remember your audience will probably be just as nervous you over your misstep and your smile will reassure them, and you, that you have the situation under control.
Your next step will,in this situation be to scat or play with the words. At this moment it is okay to lie your way through your piece. Create your own rendition of the piece that will leave the audience feeling secure in the new direction you have take the performance. Remember your audience is along for the ride of your performance and are probably rooting for you to get through it. So smile and get creative if you happen to make a mistake while singing, but do not stop singing if you have forgotten a word.
Making mistakes while singing is not an uncommon phenomenon, and although unwanted, do occur. Yet, as we have discussed, they are not the death of a performance. As singers we must learn how to deal with these mistakes in a way that does not harm our performance as a whole. In order to do this we must avoid stopping, remember a mistake can be your little secret, but only if you continue singing. If despite your efforts, your mistake is noticed by the audience, make the best of your situation and smile. This could be the opportunity to enhance the piece you are performing.