During an interview with Graham Hartmann for Loudwire, Evanescence’s iconic frontwoman Amy Lee talked about the time when being on stage and looking at the audience was the most stressful and terrifying thing for her and described what she did in order to overcome this.
As you may recall, Evanescence released their fifth studio album ‘The Bitter Truth‘ less than a month ago, on March 26, and it achieved critical acclaim as it ranked No. 1 on the Billboard Hard Rock, Current Rock Albums, and Current Alternative Albums charts. Aside from their new album, Evanescence also announced their rescheduled dates for the Worlds Collide Tour and their upcoming virtual concert.
There is no doubt that Amy Lee is considered to be one of the most talented front-musicians of all time but as it turns out, during the early days of Evanescence, she was struggling with stage fright and would actually sing on stage with her eyes closed so as not to see the audience. During an interview, Amy revealed how she overcame her stage fright and managed to make herself feel like she belongs on stage.
In the interview, Amy Lee was asked whether she attended acting classes, to which she responded by saying that she kind of did in order to overcome her stage fright. Her tutor, who was an acting coach who would sit in the middle of a big theater, make eye contact with Amy and tell her to sing holding a fake microphone. Although this technique initially made her feel very awkward, it eventually helped her break through and feel comfortable on stage.
Here’s what Amy Lee responded when she was asked about whether she took acting classes [transcribed by MHZ]:
“The acting thing wasn’t really acting. What I did was really cool and really weird. Not cool, nerdy, very embarrassing. Are you a musician, have you been up on stage?”
The interviewer responded:
Amy Lee continued:
“Okay, so, you get up on stage, and it’s super-awkward, you’re like ‘why am I here? I have to look like I belong here’ but you don’t feel like you belong there, it’s like a whole confidence thing. I had super stage fright. So, before that, I would just stand in front of the mic with my eyes closed. But they were like ‘You can’t do that, you’re going to be a real artist now so, you need to learn how to open your eyes and interact with the audience’ and that’s just the most terrifying thing for me.
So, what it was, was this acting coach who taught classes and stuff and after his classes were done I would come in for a while, I would come into an empty room, club-size maybe and he would sit in the middle of the theater just looking right at me, staring at me, keeping eye contact the whole time you know?
He’d be like ‘Go!’ so I’d turn on our music, what we were working on in the studio or writing at the time, turn ‘Bring Me To Life’ or whatever on a boombox and just act it out with no mic, like faking it, pretending. It was the nerdiest possibly imagined but I had to make eye contact with him, so this was the acting class.”
She went on to say:
“I had to sing to him and perform to him, and it was the most awkward thing ever, and one day I finally broke through, and it was like ‘screw it’ and he was like ‘there you go, you did it, that’s what you needed to do‘ and from then on it wasn’t so bad doing it to a whole audience because you can always move on to somebody or whatever but the ability there was to connect.”
You can watch the interview below.