Actor nerves, stage fright, camera fear, on-camera freeze, pre-scene jitters, acting panic…whatever name you give this emotion, stage fear and nervousness is something that all actors experience and live with. It ebbs and flows at different stages of every actor’s career in varying intensities. However, once you get real acting experience, things do get better. The more work you complete as an actor and on your own, the jitters somewhat subside. This holds true especially if the acting assignments flow steadily. (And, yes, steady work is uncommon in the acting profession.)
Not just actors, even non-actors constantly experience stage fright. It is what happens to almost anyone before going up to the stage to perform be it dancing, rendering a song, giving a speech, or acting. It’s the emotion that makes you feel, at times, like your stomach has climbed up to your throat and is choking you and your talent. Sometimes, it also affects your ability to speak your lines. And, of course, speaking is a big part of acting. And we all know that when actors choke on their lines, they panic more. Right?
Everyone knows that fear can be debilitating. If you have ever felt fear, which is very likely, you would know it’s a terrible feeling, because it creates a lack of trust in your own self. Unfortunately, sometimes, it only brings about more fear about fear.
However, you can refer to it as simple performance anxiety. And never feel that you are alone in feeling it. You only need to look around and you would find that half of the population around you is experiencing fear in some form or the other!