Do you wish you had more opportunities to perform? Simon Cowell always uttered the karaoke word with insult, but let’s not let him be the judge to its worth.

As you know, any acting project you’re fortunate enough to be a part of requires a significant team of people to direct, produce, finance, acquire equipment, handle technical matters, costumes, make up, and the list goes on. The reality for actors is that the field requires a serious amount of manpower before any role can even present itself. So what about those times when you’re itching to perform in front of an audience? To keep your acting wheels well-oiled, something you can do on your own is hit the karaoke scene. While you’re belting out popular songs, think of what you’re gaining from the experience. First of all, you can fine tune your performance skills. How do you enter and exit your time up? How can you actually rivet the audience? Remember, unlike American Idol who claims their contest is about the singing, karaoke has no boundaries. Think Biz Markie singing Just a Friend. Make your presence all your own, and find out what is working for you. Get comfortable with an audience staring at you. Allow yourself to fail a few times in the process of landing on your own talent. Bring your own unique flavor to all you sing. And, are you studying a character? Perform as your character would perform in a karaoke bar. What would he or she sing and how would their performance go?

For those of you who actually are gifted singers, this skill is an excellent addition to your acting career. Think Gweneth Paltrow singing Cruisin’ with Huey Lewis.

And best of all, singing karaoke fun!

To see Jewel sing disguised as a mild-mannered business woman at a karaoke bar, click here.

See Cameron Diaz sing karaoke in My Best Friend’s Wedding.