“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”
- Muhammad Ali
Everyone encounters situations where courage is needed. I was courageous when I had to perform music with a small group of people for the first time. When I performed with a band on stage, I showed courage and persevered through the nervousness. Two other students and I played as a band at the Fenn talent show in the 7th grade. It was our first time performing on our own.
I felt the lights beating their heat down on me. My anxiety was in full throttle as I felt sweat roll down my neck. It was a sunny April morning and the excited students of The Fenn School filed into the performance hall. Each one of them was waiting enthusiastically for the talent show to begin. Students of all ages passionately showed off their expertise to the student body. My band and I had been practicing for this opportunity for weeks. The announcer called us to the stage with a loud and deep voice. All of a sudden I felt a shock of electric nervousness shoot through me. We were unsure how our performance would play out; nevertheless, we decided to go for it. I attempted to appear confident as I strode onto the stage. I glanced at the faces across the scattered sea of people. My hands and legs shook uncontrollably. I felt my heart beating rapidly. I slowly sat before the drum set. My band mates and I took one last gaze at each other before we started to play. As the drummer, I needed to count off the beats before we began.
“One, two, a one, two, three, four!” I shouted as we kick-off the number.
The audience, immediately impressed with our performance, started intently listening. I felt instantly more confident as we began to play. We executed each note as if it was our last. The other band members exhibited such enthusiasm around me that I finally relaxed and smiled to myself. The four of us blended together to create a lively, enjoyable sound. When I glanced out to the audience, I observed the cheerful students who clapped their hands and moved to our music. The jubilant energy in the room continued as we robustly struck our last note, which left the audience upbeat and cheerful.
I could not stop smiling. The performance brought me joy and pride that I had not expected when I first staggered onto the stage. That experience was my first time performing in front of hundreds of people without the supervision of a teacher or instructor of any kind. Ever since that performance, I have been more courageous about everything I do. Being courageous opens up new doors in life that you never thought existed.