In this Preshow Rituals segment, the indie pop artist, Beck Pete, reveals what she does before taking the stage. You can check out the story, after the break.
Before a show, I used to be overly specific about what foods I had, what I drank, etc. I was always afraid that I would do something to “mess” up my set before I even got on stage. Honestly, I think that stemmed from a lack of confidence, and ultimately, I think I almost conjured symptoms similar to those of getting sick because of stress. Now my focus is more on mental state and overall well-being… not avoiding my favorite foods and stripping away the things that make me happy to try to “prepare.”
My list now is simple. I make sure to give myself time. This is so hard with all of the things to do before a big show, but I need at least 2 hours on show day to do whatever feels right creatively for me — lay on the ground for 2 hours straight, write a song, sit in the sun, exercise, eat a whole damn pizza — anything that FEELS good. The rest of the day will be chaos probably, but if I’m going to really FEEL on stage (which is the most important thing to me) I need to start by tapping into that place of being in-tune with myself earlier in the day. Keeping with the time theme, I also need to give myself at least five minutes right before I go on stage to be alone. This energizes me, gives me a chance to check in with how I’m really feeling, and lets me connect authentically with the crowd.
In addition to that, the only specific ritualistic thing that I do the day of a show now is wake up and write anything that comes to my mind for three pages. It clears that debris of the previous day, and prepares me to be a blank canvas and really appreciate the moments to follow.
For a long time, I was living between the highs of shows. We all experience them, but I was chasing them like the purpose of the performances was to fuel me. Now I realize that the performances instead are about audience connection. Truly, they’re about the audience experiencing the music. That’s helped me to lean into the moments of creation in-between because those are FOR me, but now I just want to prepare myself to feel all moments equally. These two things help me to do that.