About Us

Contact Us


The 21st Century

Hacktreks Travel

Hacktreks 2

First Chapters
Lifestyles 1
Lifestyles 2

The International Writers Magazine
: First Time: Man with Guitar

Stage Frightener
Michael Williams

Its five minutes before I take to the stage, shivering everything seems so cold. First gig since the band split and scarily the emphasis is much more on me now. Any one performer knows that you experience several emotions pre show. Feelings of anxiety, anxiousness, fear, and excitement all appear and disappear just as fast. When the bright lights hit the adrenaline takes over and it doesn’t leave till hours after the show. On this occasion fear is the only feeling, whether it will turn to embarrassment or regret is yet to be seen ...

Six months I spent writing songs, and in the next 30 minutes things can only really go one of two ways. Emotionally it’s difficult to accept, that you will bare yourself for a short time to be greeted by a muted reception. Especially for me, but after many previous experiences it is no stranger than normal. I am opening up the night of music, will It be busy? What are they expecting? – my nerves tingle at the thought of what will soon come. The sound of the outside world, a mix of voices preceded by laughter and back to a murmur again. It sounds busy, after all the headline act is a local hero playing to his loyal troops, I’m just another support act - Yeah the one that needs support! Why did I sign up for this, this was a mistake.

I have been dumped in the deep end and am sinking before I have tried to swim. On the outside I look calm, I’ve done this before, I am ready, I know im ready. On the inside I’m a wreck, the throbbing pain in my chest cavity is too much. I put the knife there only I can take it out. I clutch my guitar, I know its there, me and my steed, it wont fail me I know. Re-stringed, tuned, and polished she has never been more ready that now. Past experiences have taught me to take care of her, or she will fall at the first hurdle. The hurdle is steep tonight, I can only just see over. I need what is over it, the confidence to be able to jump again. I am ready, plectrums – check, vocal chords – check, I choke on something, a coughing fit wouldn’t be welcome now. The wallpaper music fades and the crowd starts to settle. The lights go down on stage, I clutch the neck of my guitar, harder this time. Thoughts are flying through my mind faster than rush hour in the London underground. The pressure I’ve put on myself is immense at least ten times my body weight. I run the order over in my head one last time, and step out into the spot light..
© Michael Williams Nov 2004

Michael is a first year Creative Arts student at Portsmouth University

More Lifestyles


© Hackwriters 2000-2004 all rights reserved