Call it what you like: nerves, stage-fright, the voice in your head, or as the actors at school call it… the f***er. As performers, we all spend a proportion of our lives harangued by the same nagging anxiety. The anxiety that we are not good enough. The anxiety that we don’t know what we are doing. The anxiety that we will make a fool of ourselves and be shunned from society. Make it as catastrophic and ridiculous as you like - someone, somewhere will have thought it before a big performance or audition.
However hard we may try to look at the bigger picture, the f***er gets us all at some point. And one of the most important things we have to learn, is how to tell the f***er to f*** off.
During my awkward early-teenage years I let my f***er rule the roost. Then one day, a singing teacher persuaded me to stage a revolution. And so, for the last five years my f***er and I have been at war. Much of this war is fought ‘cold’ - more tactics and strategy than all out warfare - but occasionally he rears his ugly head and cries his hellish battle cry…
We all have our own demons in this world. Mine is my f***er. Although he can bring out the worst in me, my f***er also acts as a constant reminder to be kind to others; for until we become mind-readers we will never know the battles being fought within one-another’s heads.
“Be kind. For everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about”