Playing Keynote Slideshows

Dim the house lights, raise the curtains, and cue the applause sign, it’s show time at last. With the spotlight on you and your pitch, the last thing you need is a complicated set of controls for moving through your slides. Happily, Keynote makes it dead-easy to advance through your slides using the keyboard or a remote control.

To get started, open the Keynote document, and select the first slide in the show using the slide navigator or by choosing Slide → Go to → First Slide. (You can also select a different slide if you’d like to start somewhere in the middle of your presentation.) Now start the show: Click the toolbar’s Play button, choose Play → Play Slideshow, or press ⌘-Option-P. Your first slide flickers onto the screen, and you’re on.


You can set up your slideshow to begin playing automatically as soon as you open the document, not a bad idea for slideshows you’ve finished editing. Open the Document Inspector, and turn on the “Automatically play upon open” option. That way, Keynote opens directly to the first slide and launches into your slideshow, completely bypassing the editing screen—the “man behind the curtain” whom it’s best to keep tucked away from your audience. To stop the show and bring up the editing view, press the Escape key, Q (for quit), or period [.].

Controlling the Presentation

The basics are easy, and the controls work exactly the same whether you’re using the presenter display or normal slideshow mode. Keynote gives you lots ...

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