Sunday, July 11, 2010

Vary Your Levels - Just Like Danny and Sandy

With the release of the Grease Sing-a-Long Movie this month, I just had to find some speaking advice from my favorite childhood movie.

Take a look at "Summer Nights:"

What makes this performance so fabulous?

So many things - but something I never noticed until tonight, when I watched the song for probably the 100,000th time, is the way Danny and Sandy are always changing levels.

They both begin sitting down. Then Danny stands on the top bleacher. Sandy stands on the table. Danny lies down on the bleacher. Sandy skips across the cafeteria, falls down, etc. And it all makes sense with the content and feel of the song.

It may sound like an obvious device, but it's one of the many reasons why this performance is so endlessly entertaining.

And the best part? You can apply this strategy without being able to dance like John Travolta or Olivia Newton John!

From the Green Room: As you give your presentation, vary your levels. Sit. Stand. Kneel. Walk around. You will help keep the audience engaged, while also raising your own energy level.


Anonymous said...

A totally fabulously performance that never gets old!
I can see how walking around could enhance a presentation, but I'm having a hard time visualizing the advantages to sitting and (especially) to kneeling. Wouldn't all that moving about distract the audience's attention from the core message?

Sarah Gershman said...

Particularly if you are giving a longer presentation or class, varying levels is very important. It helps the audience keep up with your content, especially when you shift topics. Thanks for reading!