You have goals for your public speaking or presentations. And being a competent and influential communicator and presenter is becoming more important than ever.

I can help.

My name’s Sarah Denholm, I’m based in Melbourne, and I’m a speech coach, trainer and consultant. I do public speaking and presentation skills coaching throughout Australia and beyond.

If you have something to say (or are employed to do so), and want to become comfortable, engaging and influential in front of groups, I could well be the right coach for you.

Learn how to increase your influence and impact when you communicate: whether that’s a conference keynote, small group meeting or 1:1 client appointment.

After years of struggling with performance and public speaking anxiety (see my story below), I’ve learned what’s needed to prepare and perform at your best in front of an audience.

I originally trained as a professional Classical pianist, and performed at a high level in venues such as the Purcell Room, Southbank, London.

Believe me, this hones your skills on stage in front of audiences of any size. Appear unprofessional – whether that’s playing wrong notes, being unprepared, or not connecting with your audience – and your reputation and career nose dive. So it’s the perfect learning ground for public speaking!

Sarah Denholm Presentation Skills and Influence Coach
Sarah Denholm presenting on a large stage holding a microphone with screen behind her

About: background

Years in Business
Satisfied Clients
LinkedIn Recommendations
+ 5⭐
Reviews: Complete Presentation Skills Course


  • Certified Master Business Coach Graduate of B-Coach (2004)
  • Coach U life-coaching Graduate (2002)
  • Master’s degree in piano performance (1990)
  • TAE40110 Certificate IV in Training and Assessment
  • Asia Pacific Institute of Learning and Performance member
  • AusAPT (Australian Association of Psychological Type) member

I also have over 70 recommendations on LinkedIn: view my profile here.

My struggle with performance anxiety as a musician

During my six years at music college in the U.K. I suffered from performance anxiety. The competition and pressure was intense, but I coped – until chronic and disfiguring severe eczema took over my whole body. I deteriorated until I had to be hospitalised – twice. At one point I didn’t leave the house for three months – my world couldn’t have shrunk any smaller.

When I resurfaced, not cured but improved, I had a problem. My previous slow decline while I was still performing, plus time away from the world, had made my performance anxiety overwhelming, and I could barely get on stage. I was self-conscious, worried about what the audience were thinking of me, and couldn’t keep my focus on the music; I had to do something or lose my career.

So I took six months off to backpack around the world on my own (challenging for a shy introvert!). After meeting a man from Melbourne, I moved to Australia and started a new life as a pianist. And I found my performing anxiety solution: learning how to speak in public. I started as a very nervous speaker, trying to speak to audiences at concerts. My voice shook, and I couldn’t look at people face-on, but swung my gaze from side to side…and I swallowed all the time! I decided to do something about it.

Starting the public speaking journey

I joined a club and found that with specific tools – and practice – I began to enjoy public speaking. This started my passion for helping others to communicate effectively in front of groups, large or small.

My coaching and training is a unique and dynamic blend of research and lived experience including:

Communication skills

Behavioural science of learning, engagement and influence




Emotional and social intelligence


Performing arts

Learn more about my Services – Individuals or Services – Organisations.

Recent media interviews include in the business and career sections of The Age Melbourne, Sydney Morning Herald and ArtsHub Australia; Exemplar Magazine; Your Next Chapter podcast (Nov. 2019).