Most Anime conventions will have a costume contest though, often times the prizes are minimal to nothing. Some costumes are made from scratch with the finest of finery, others were store bought or pieced together at the mission store. They are always fun though, which is the point, of course.
I always enjoy shooting masquerades and cosplays and the Masquerade at Colossal Con 2011 was no exception to this rule. One of the areas though, that it was exceptional, was the quality of the grand prize for the masquerade. One lucky winner was to win a trip for two to Japan.
Many beautiful costumes were paraded across the stage in various manners during the first part of the show, the skit competition. During this portion of the show the cosplayers humorously played their roles with their own prepared and rehearse lines, songs, and dance numbers. Some Masquerades have the cosplayers lip syncing to their previuosly recorded lines but from what I could tell, the cosplayers at Colossal Con were all performing their acts in their own voices, live (annoyingly, the mic was often in the foreground of my shots. Yeah, us photographers can be picky!)
One of the more amazing performances was the masked violin player who literally bent over backwards for the audience. I haven’t seen such violin playing since Leslie Nielson played Ryan Harrison in Wrongfully Accused. Of course the gang from And Sewing is Half the Battle did a stellar performance in their comedic song and dance.
After the skit competition portion of the show the judges adjourned to confer while the walk-on section of the show proceded. The walk-on show is less dramatic but still fun and there were some beautiful costumes displayed in that section, including the winner of the Grand Prize…
Katia Osadchuk, an 18 year old fresh out of High School, was the winner of the trip to Japan. She made a gorgeous, layered dress and then wore it on the stage. I chatted with her briefly and took her photo before the show. It is an amazing garment and the wearer, equally amazing, not just for creating it, but also for wearing it. She was unable to sit down and had to stand for the entire show.
Here are a few more pics from the show and for several hundred more, check out the Colossal Con photos in the Gallery.