If there is one thing I love it is public speaking. I don’t know why, but if you give me a topic to run with I will go full tilt talking about it on stage in front a group of strangers.
I love talking about things that I am passionate about and I recently shared on my Facebook an Ignite Cardiff talk I gave late in 2019. I talked about how Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) had helped me, even before I knew it was helping me in pursuit of wanting to become an actor.
I’m still not a professional actor but putting myself in positions that will more than likely return with a ‘no thanks’ really pushes me into wanting to be the best that I can be. In 2019 I was in 9 theatrical productions and loved every single one, I was also in student films and working during this time too and more importantly still auditioning for other roles too!
These led me to my worst audition ever.
Before I get there I want to let you know that I was typically rehearsing for three shows at any one time, rehearing Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and twice on Sunday… It was a mad time and really didn’t leave a lot of time to practice anything else.
However, always one to overstretch myself I was still applying for different shows, as you never know what you’re going to get and if your pipeline dries up you might not end up in something over the three months running into a show.
I turned up at one audition and he wanted a monologue and a song, for amateur theatre. I hadn’t properly prepared at all and I’ll be honest, it was embarrassing.
Never again will I enter a room unprepared again.
However, I still entered the room and gave my best rendition and walked out of that room knowing I had done it. This would put me in good stead later in the year when for work I would deliver a speech for a conglomerate of businesses in the third and health sectors and later that week a talk for Diabetes UK.
These talks were no different in relation to time I had to prepare for them but having gone through the embarrassment of that audition I now knew what key points I wanted to get out of the talk.
I knew how I wanted people to feel after they heard me.
This is what is important to me when I take to a stage or talk, or speak to anyone or perform onstage. More recently, my series of live streams I’ve been doing with my sister on HelloTomDyer on Facebook.
I want you to feel different after you’ve heard from me.
Speaking in front of an audience is different. In the coming days I’ll be sharing a version of a talk I was due to give to the University of South Wales. I recorded it at home due to lockdown and it is nothing like the Ignite Cardiff talk I gave in late 2019. I need that buzz or anticipatory energy to really spark. Recording a passionate talk in an empty kitchen is still something I need to work on.
What are your thoughts on public speaking and what have you learnt?