Return to the Home Page
Information on Talks/Speeches
Meeting Planner Information

Walk the Stage

by Jim Snack


One way to be more relaxed during your presentation is get comfortable with the physical space you will be using during the program.  Before your audience arrives, actually walk through the space where you will be doing your program.  Physically get up on the platform, if there is one, and walk the entire stage. 

If there are steps up to a platform, walk up and down the steps a few times to get comfortable with them.  When on stage, notice any unevenness or cracks in the stage floor that could catch a toe and cause you to trip during your presentation.  Notice any wires that may be lying on the floor or taped down.  Walk across them a few times so you will remember where they are located.  Look into the audience.  Are there any seats that have partial vision, possible obstructed by a pillar or pole?  Can they be moved to give everyone an unobstructed view of the stage?

While you are walking through the space, notice the lighting, where the spotlights are focused.  Are there are any dark spots or shadows?  If necessary, ask the AV person or a banquet set-up person to re-focus spotlights so the stage is better lit. 

Speak to the sound technician if there is one and check the microphone.  If you are using a hard-wired mike, check to see that the cord is long enough to allow you to move away from the lectern.  It will probably be taped down and you may have to pull up the tape to get more cord.  If you use a clip-on lapel microphone, put it on and turn it on.  Then walk the stage. Looking for any areas where the signal drops out (dead spots) or where you get a hideous feedback squeal.  If you get any feedback, try turning down the volume a little and walk through the space again.  Keep doing so until you no longer have any feedback.

Keeping walking the stage or performance area until you feel completely comfortable.  When you enter to begin your program you want to “own the space.”  Start taking possession of that space before your program begins.  Take this one action and your presentation will improve tenfold.



You are welcome to reprint this article

Please use the following text on your reprint:

Copied with permission of the author, Jim Snack


Back to Article Index