I recently watched an online video hosted by stand up comedian, Ralphie May. In it, he provided a wealth on information and tips on the business of stand up comedy. Of particular interest to me was what he said about BEARDS! Ralphie went on to explain that any head gear or obstructions on the face, such as BEARDS, would only reflect poorly on the comic, as if they’ve got something to hide. As a stand up comic, we need to strive to appear honest and trustworthy. This allows us to better set up our jokes. If we are expecting the audience to believe what we are saying, only to hit them hard with the punchline, then we need to appear as trustworthy as possible. This thought floored me! I’ve been sporting a goatee for the last 10 years! Could this advice really have some merit to it? Ralphie went on to explain that this is one of the reasons politicians and salesmen prefer to be clean shaven. Those people need to appear as trustworthy and honest as possible. This does appear to make sense, which only illustrates how stand up comedy has so many small intricate parts to it!
Being the naysayer I am, I decided to look up pictures of our past presidents, and what do you know?! Our last 18 presidents were clean shaven! In fact, 9 out out of our 43 presidents stayed clear of the BEARD or any facial hair! Maybe there is something to this? For the sake of the craft, I’ve decided to shave my goatee and hit the stage without it. Maybe I have been hiding behind the beard? I’ll have to keep you updated on how and if my sets improve.
Incidentally, I find it ironic that Abraham Lincoln had a beard but was still nicknamed Honest Abe… Oh how our world has evolved!