Not every entertainer’s stage presence is a present. Some need cliff notes on channeling their inner Busta Rhymes. Performance coach Laura Kessler (Usher, N’Sync, Eve) breaks down how artists learn to roc the mic right
Illustration: Salene Casteneda
Muscles don’t lie. You can tell when someone is nervous—it transcends through the entire nervous system. I teach grounding your nervous system through martial arts or yoga. The exercises are designed to engage all the muscles emanating from the core. Frank Ocean is sincere [on stage], but he doesn’t use much of his body at all. He needs to use his legs as a base, like a tripod or pyramid. Sometimes when he holds the mic, his whole shoulder goes up and that changes the tension in the neck area. That could literally make you more nervous. We’re creative athletes. You have to treat it as a physical sport.