If you’re like me, public speaking is torture. Watching others do presentations or workshops, it sometimes feels like public speaking comes easier to some than others. For someone like Chris Forrest, you give the man a microphone and he shines. Give me a microphone and I stumble.
Fortunately for me, public speaking isn’t a requisite, but for comedian Chris Forrest, his entire career relies on his ability to confidently stand up in front of a crowd and tell jokes.
Whether or not public speaking does come easier to some, the good news is that everyone can overcome their fear of public speaking and learn certain tips and tricks of the trade to become a better and more confident speaker.
Chris Forrest is here to save the day.
The local stand-up will be hosting a paid-for public speaking workshop at the Randpark Golf Club on Friday 7 September.
Indie Does It: What’s the reason for hosting a public speaking workshop?
Chris Forrest: My dad volunteers as a guide at the Parktown Westcliff Heritage Association. One day he asked me to give a talk to his fellow volunteers on public speaking. It went really well and I got some great feedback, so I’ve decided to do it again and open it up to the public.
Indie Does It: Who is the workshop aimed at?
Chris Forrest: As a corporate comedian and MC I often work at conferences and functions where people are very nervous about speaking in front of a crowd and are looking for helpful tips. It’s a good skill for anyone really though, even if you’re not giving a huge presentation, you may be giving a speech at a wedding or 21st.
Indie Does It: Do you still get nervous when you go on stage?
Chris Forrest: I do, but not in the same way as when I started out, it’s more of a rush now, it’s part of the reason I still love comedy.
Indie Does It: Does the workshop involve active participation?
Chris Forrest: It’s quite interactive, but there’s a lot of information to get through so there won’t be too much in the way of active participation.
Indie Does It: Is public speaking something people can learn to do in one sitting, or does it involve continuous practice?
Chris Forrest: It’s definitely a skill you get better at the more you practice. I’ll be giving people the tools to improve right away and this will help them practice, making the process much easier.
Indie Does It: Your top tip for public speaking?
Chris Forrest: Smile, be confident and look relaxed, even if you don’t feel it, your audience will trust you much more.
Venue: Randpark Golf Club
Date: 7 September 2018
Duration: 2 hours
Price: R200 (includes tea, coffee and breakfast), available from Pickled Ginger
*Spaces very limited so make sure to book ASAP