How to Shave During a Concert

Being the attention-loving, extroverted, fame-whore that I am, the center of attention is often where I like to be, so it only stands to reason that some of my stupider ideas have spawned from a need to shock and awe whomever I happen to be with.  Perhaps you know this about me already, and so it will come as no surprise to you that learning to shave was one of those times where I decided to have a terrible idea.

I suppose I technically learned to shave in middle school, but I never had a full beard until college, when I decided to try it out.  It grew in slowly, and blondely, and I was fairly disappointed in it.  Although eventually it filled out a little, I was happy to get rid of it, if only the right opportunity presented itself.  What I wanted was to really surprise people in a dramatic way, and what better opportunity than on stage in front of an audience?!

I saw my chance arrive when my a cappella group was holding a concert for which I had written a Star Wars parody of a Smashmouth song.  The plan was to start the second half of the program with the tune, which I was going to sing while dressed in a hooded Jedi robe.  If I sang the first half of the concert bearded, and then shaved during intermission, I could walk out hooded for the second half, and slowly, dramatically reveal my face to the audience as I started to sing.  In fact, I wouldn’t even tell or show my other group members this secret until we were on stage singing.  Wouldn’t they be surprised!?

There was, sadly, one flaw in my brilliant plan.  As I may have mentioned before, this was my first beard.  I had no idea how one was supposed to shave it off.  I did not consider that I might trim it with scissors first, or that I might need more than the disposable Bic razor from the student market.  As I stood at the sink of the men’s dressing room, two things quickly became clear.  The first was that this was not working out at all in the seven minutes that I had to do this.  The second was that I had hacked enough of my beard off that it was too late to go back.

Not wanting anyone to see what I was doing, I slashed at my poor face until I was bleeding profusely from pretty much everywhere.  Having been called to the stage several times, eventually someone came in to see what was going on, so, my face spattered with bleeding tufts of blonde hair, I threw on my robe, pulled the hood over my face, and walked onto the stage.

When the song began, I slowly pulled back my hood to great dramatic effect.  I certainly looked different.  My mother, who was sitting in the front row, did notice that blood seemed to be pouring out of my face, and I think my fellow singers also noticed that something was wrong, but most of the audience was far enough away that they couldn’t see my wounds, so that was good at least.  Overall I would rate the experience as a modest success.  I did surprise some people, but I also managed to look like a dying chicken.

I would totally be up for trying this again sometime, now that I know a little more about beards and shaving, and if you yourself are going to try to shave in the middle of performing a concert, I would suggest doing a little trimming first, and have more than one razor on hand.  But otherwise, go for it!  Just don’t be afraid of a little blood.

Posted in A Cappella, College, Concert, Misadventures, Shaving, Singing, Throwback Thursday.


  1. Awesome. I was at that concert and I didn’t know that story until now – definitely didn’t notice from my seats in the back. BTW, whenever that song gets stuck in my head, it’s YOUR lyrics, not the real ones, that I hear. “It ain’t no joke, I use the force to make you choke, and everything is all right, ’cause I’m a Jedi knight…”

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