Paul Stones - Performance Direction

Paul Stones helps poets act, writers perform, and the terrified speak.

Off the Cuff


Banish Wedding Speech Anxiety

wedding speech off the cuffFor weeks before the speech there is a nagging ache at the back of your mind; a growing tension.

You make attempts at writing the thing. Some of it sounds ok, but there’s still the hardly acknowledged fear of the day itself. Standing in front of everyone; your best friend/new spouse/son or daughter and all the family and friends, waiting for you to say something heartfelt/funny/profound?

Even if you can write the right speech, how on earth will you be able to do it justice, fulfil your obligation and say it well?

The weeks shrink into days and the ‘nagging ache’ becomes a palpable worry. The effort of attempting to push the thing to the back of your mind makes it impossible to tell which are the good bits anymore. You’re no longer sure if there are any good bits.

The reality is that one day soon you will be there. This event is going to happen and you will walk into it blindly hoping that everything will miraculously work out.

And the truth is, it probably will be ok. You’ll start and you’ll stumble maybe, but in the end the speech has got to be said and you’re the one who’s going to say it. Everyone will forgive the mistakes you will almost inevitably make, but the day will continue and all will be well.

So what do you need me for?

Perhaps only the following:

  • So that instead of worrying you will use your preparation time enjoyably building your confidence and skills.
  • So that the speech you create will be the one you want.
  • So that not only will every word you say be true and good, but that you will enjoy speaking it.
  • And so that your part in this special occasion will add to the whole experience for everyone.

With years of experience working with writers and performers in theatre, I have found that many of the problems associated with public speaking can be managed in fairly short order.

In a friendly and unpressured session we can look at the speech and your performance of it, gradually building confidence and applying tried and tested methods for speaking in public, preparing you to give your best.

“Paul always makes you feel relaxed in his company and I’d highly recommend him to anybody who requires a shot of confidence and some stage skills before making a presentation. Also, for any writer who wants to be a more engaging presenter of their work … Paul is the perfect facilitator.”  Justin Coe (performance poet)

See the ‘Testimonials’ page for the kind of help I can give and contact me for a reasonable quote for cost.