What should I do if there’s a disaster on stage?

What to do if there’s a “so-called” disaster onstage…

I’ve had them all. I’ve had fire engines going right by and staying right in front of the building. I’ve had people… I’ve had a woman go into labor – swear to God – we had to stop the presentation, get the EMR, get… I’ve had it all.

But the one that comes back to me the most: I’m speaking in California, I’m outside. There’s a group of about 200 and bleachers and the sound system fails, and, the backup sound system fails and I tell them, “No problem. I’m an actor. I can speak big.”

And I was doing just great until the El Toro marine base airshow dress rehearsal happened overhead. The jets were going – I mean you couldn’t ignore them, so what did I do – did I pretend they weren’t there? No, I used them. I had fun with them. I pointed up, I spoke in between jets and I had the audience laughing because they knew what was happening.

They knew it wasn’t my fault. It wasn’t a disaster. It was just life. Life is going to happen. If you’re a speaker, use whatever’s happening – even if you think of it is a disaster – but use it. The audience will love you for it. And they’re going to probably go away remembering, “gosh, I can’t believe how well he did when those jets were overhead.”