1.?? ?Play in front of friends and family members that you trust to give you constructive criticism rather than harsh comments.? The point of this is perfecting your sound and techniques; others will hear things you may not hear.
2.?? ?Try to create a similar practice area to the one you will be performing in.? This will make you more comfortable in front of large groups of people because you can visualize yourself in your practice area which takes some of the pressure off.
3.?? ?Practice the same way you will be performing.? If you?ll be performing standing up then practice that way.
4.?? ?Videotape/record yourself playing and watch it to see if there?s anything you need to work on; any bad habits like fidgeting or playing with your hair will become evident and you can work on not doing those things.
5.?? ?Invite your friends to watch you practice so you can become comfortable playing in a distracting environment.
6.?? ?Relax.? Take some time off before the performance and try not to worry about it.? Constantly thinking about it will make you more nervous and prone to mistakes on stage.
7.?? ?Always warm up right before performing.? Regardless of what instrument you play, you should always spend a little time before each performance warming up.? Even during practice sessions I?m sure you notice that it takes a little while to get back into the swing of things.
8.?? ?Try to make eye-contact with a friend or family member while you?re on stage.? This should give you positive reinforcement and make you feel better.
9.?? ?Wear something you feel comfortable in.? You want to feel as comfortable as possible on stage, whether that?s comfort with the music you?re playing or what you?re wearing; comfort is essential to confidence.
10.?? ?Practice incessantly.? The more confident you are with the music, the better you?ll feel and play on stage.
The first time you play in front of people will be nerve-racking regardless, but practicing these tips should minimize the surprises and make you a little more comfortable.
Play your music!