Speak with Power. If you become emotional as you speak I encourage you to press on with your talk. As you boldly continue you will eventually work past the shaking voice and tears and become very strong. I don’t understand the process but your emotion transfers into great power. Do not stop and try to gather yourself. Do not apologize for your emotion. Press on and look for when the emotions begin to change into that power—this is very moving for your audience.
The beauty of all this practice is that when you’re in the middle of your moment, you’ll be familiar with where you are in your talk, with what you are doing, and where this is all leading. I have found this feeling to be extremely comforting. You’ll know that the time to emphasize or gesture is coming up, that you’re building up to your best line, your big point. You’ll know it’s almost finished and you realize that everyone is silent, watching you and intent upon your words. And rightly so.
Afterwards, it is very gratifying to receive applause in the wake of this kind of effort. To be thanked and congratulated on the depth, strength and courage of your talk is very empowering. To have listeners think, “Wow, they can speak too!” takes the opening night experience to a new level of professionalism and fullness.