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View Full Version : I know not of masquerading...some enlightenment plz?


Icetigris
09-25-2003, 01:23 AM
I've never been in the masqurade, but I'm thinking of doing one for next Otakon. I would probably be doing something Yugioh, seeing as my friend and I have sort of assembled a semi-group of nothing. What types of things are good to put in skits? How do you keep them short without making them crappy? Are the costumes more important than the skit, vice-versa, or does it depend on where/what you are? How much crazed fandom is allowed before being frowned upon? Are extras possible in any way, shape or form? Are crossovers frowned upon greatly, or do ppl like them? Anything I haven't mentioned here that is very important to keep in mind? Any input is helpful, thanx :)

Koumori
09-25-2003, 06:48 AM
In most of the masquerades I've been to, the skit seems to count for more than the costumes do in the judging. Most cons will have separate awards for craftsmanship now. As for what to put in your skit, the only cardinal rule I would propose is: Don't bore the audience! Don't throw in in-jokes most casual fans won't get, don't go on for too long, don't sing three verses when one would do.

katrinastrife
09-26-2003, 08:54 AM
I second what Koumori said. But, the con should note whether the costume- (self explanitory) and cosplay- (skit) contests are two seperate events, or just one.

Maybe you should try parodying a card battle, or something?

Anyway, just be sure to keep it short and sweet, and if at all possible, PRE-record your skit, and burn it on to CD (the audience usually has trouble hearing, if you don't use mics).

Icetigris
09-27-2003, 11:43 PM
I wasn't planning on doing a card battle b/c I think it's been done too many times, but I don't know now that you've clarified that in-jokes are not a good thing. I had this thought that I could use a bunch of extras to say "mine" like the seagulls in "Finding Nemo" when all the bishies are on stage, or something like that. Burning your skit onto a CD sounds like a good idea, but how would you time the actual skit right? I don't really know where to start with writing the skit, tho...x_x

Psychotic Jei
09-28-2003, 02:03 AM
Timing the skit takes some guesswork sometimes. You just have to think out in your head..and hope you get it right. Or find a way to rehearse it after a test ruf of timing and find out where you need to add some and such

betani
10-22-2003, 11:49 AM
actually (at otakon at least) a skit is meant to show of your costume. in other words, make your costumes then come up with a skit that would best accentuate them. don't go by this though. my group and i always come up with the basic idea first and fit the best costumes into it. if they're simple, so what? as long as it's a good skit and the two things go well together (ie. - a serious skit with characters who would never do that wouldn't work too well in most cases). you'll be fine. good luck with the skit!

Koumori
10-22-2003, 12:02 PM
actually (at otakon at least) a skit is meant to show of your costume. in other words, make your costumes then come up with a skit that would best accentuate them. don't go by this though. my group and i always come up with the basic idea first and fit the best costumes into it. if they're simple, so what? as long as it's a good skit and the two things go well together (ie. - a serious skit with characters who would never do that wouldn't work too well in most cases). you'll be fine. good luck with the skit!

Ideally, yes, a skit is there to show off your costume - but I've seen less and less emphasis on costumes over the years, when it comes to presentations and judging. Your mileage may vary.

Ali
10-22-2003, 03:44 PM
I had this thought that I could use a bunch of extras to say "mine" like the seagulls in "Finding Nemo" when all the bishies are on stage, or something like that.

Ha! That sounds pretty funny. I'd get a kick out of it. (and I'm one of the worst audience members known to man)

Are crossovers frowned upon greatly, or do ppl like them?

Funny you should ask... At my very first con, my group wanted to do a skit. We had 6 people from 5 different anime/manga and 1 extra (the OTAKU)... we managed to write something up about an hour before the masq... I'd recommend against this, even though it's what I keep doing. (The audience seemed to like the skit, though...)

As for the CD... I don't like using them myself. I'm a theatre person, so I've got a stage voice and *might* even be able to fill the room without mics (thanks to some training in a big, low-tech high school theatre.) There have sometimes been problems with sounds... this usually depends on the con. I'd think Otakon would have it pretty sorted out, though.

If you practice a lot with your track beforehand, you should do fine. (practice is good... I just wish I could remember that...) If it's really important to you that everything looks perfect, make sure the other people in your skit are competent and willing to put in the time.

Cyber Wolf
10-23-2003, 10:34 PM
Hmm...I def. agree with the fact that you must have jokes that the audience understands. Though I'd advise throwing an in reference in here or there so the really avid Yugioh fans will be amused.

As for content, I'd say make it funny. Like maybe something like...
He draws out a card face down and thinks it's a certain card like the Dark Magician or something, but it's a really a ____ card! :D Madness ensues, etc, etc....

Edit: Oh yeah, random = goldmine. But make sure it's tied to a ref. that just about everyone will get...like Michael Jackson or something.

dEmEnTeDcHiCkEn
10-24-2003, 06:16 PM
Heh... What if they were playing with pokemon cards?

Miaka No Baka
10-24-2003, 09:10 PM
definately keep the jokes to where people who've never even seen the show could understand. While yugi-oh is a popular series now, i'd have to say it's mostly popular with younger kids versus teenagers and adults (while that doesn't mean teenagers and adults don't watch it at all) so keep that in mind.

if you've never seen a masquerade before i'd recommend attending one first so you can get a feel for how it is and what happens. Keep in mind it does take up pretty much most of your time on saturday (or whatever day they hold it on)

the funnier the skit the better it goes over with the crowd, as well as the shorter the skit it is too. Run your skit idea infront of some people who aren't in the group, like maybe some friends who aren't participating as we all tend to have a bias for our own ideas versus others ^_^;

Miaka no Baka

Icetigris
10-24-2003, 11:00 PM
!!! Wow, you guys have been really helpful! Thanx ^_^! I'm having a few more ideas for this thing now, though, I still have to find a Yami, a Seto, a Black Magician would be REALLY nice, a Malik, and maybe an Otogi to make fun of XP. A Mokuba would help too. My friend's sister has already started her Ancient Bakura costume (I, of course, have not started Black Magician Girl yet ^_^;;), tho I'm not sure what my friend is actually doing. She's going as Change of Heart for Katsucon, but I don't think she's decided on what she's going to be for Otakon yet.
>>dEmEnTeDcHiCkEn: I really like the Pokemon cards idea; hmm...
*Seto: I summon the almighty.......what the devil?!
*Yami:...It's a Golduck.
*Black Magician Girl: Ha ha sux 4 u!

yeah....I need sleep x_x

betani
10-28-2003, 06:00 PM
if you want to see some examples of past skits at cons, you can go to http://members.aol.com/deathcom5/ and download some. they're quite amusing.

Icetigris
10-28-2003, 11:08 PM
^_^ ooo, wow! thankies! ^_^

HEDGESMFG
11-12-2003, 03:20 PM
I've been in about 3 skits at cons this year (each of the Chicago cons). In a sense I'm still a N00b to this, but I seem to at least have a nack with audience pleasing moments, actually...I too am hoping that I could get out to Otakon and do a skit with a few friends of mine next year XD


But anyway...


1. Project, for Gods sakes project! This is easy for me because I've been playing highly overemotional characters that make shouting an easy task. When the audience can clearly hear what you say, it makes any skit that much more enjoyable.

2. Try not to rely on music cues, my first 2 skits had music cues in em, and both time it didn't work out, by my 3rd one at Anime Reactor I just said "screw it". Each time I was perfectly fine with out em (Though I do have skits in mind that HAVE to use music cues, but that's another story.) If you really need em, make it CLEAR as possible to the music guy WHEN to play it, WHAT TRACK to play, and WHAT NUMBER and TITLE your skit is.

3. If you're doing crossovers, take the characters and do some WILD things with them. I don't necessarily mean in the perverted kind of way (which is certianly a fan favorate thing amoung Masqs these days), I mean in the "Good god that's so wrong!" kind of way for the characters. Put a Gundam pilot in a Sailor Suit, Make Nabashine step into the middle of Maison Ikkoku only to be stopped by the fate of the universe(And yes, these have been done, don't swipe them ;P), just do things that the audience TOTALLY doesn't expect and you'll be a hit.

4. Timing. Don't drag on for to long with dialoue, only give enough to get the general idea, and then bring out the jokes at a good time to keep the skit from becomming borring.

5. Acting. I already mentioned projecting, but another very important aspect is to pay attention to movement. Use overexadurated movements to emphasize your emotion, overexadurating the lines as well can easily become hilarious to watch. Especially when the character themselves are emotionally unstable, insane, fanatical, ect...


Woo, but hey...I'm still new at this so I may be off about some things.

Oh, and one more thing. I don't know about cons outside of the midwest area, but out here we have an overabundence of Pocky based jokes. LET IT DIE! POCKY IS A SNACK, NOT A GOOD SKIT GIMMICK!

Icetigris
11-22-2003, 11:06 PM
Pocky jokes?!?!? D00d, that's uberlame. I was not aware that that level of L4M3N355 was even possible...x_x Have you ever seen ppl use extras? I really want to use the Finding Nemo seagull idea... Also, does the maquerade take up a lot of time? Like, do you have to hang out backstage for hours? I want to do the artists' alley thing at next Otakon, but I also want to try out the masquerade.

WhiteStorm
12-06-2003, 11:15 PM
Nice guidelines. I just wanted to jokingly ask: can you be my friend? LOL, I can see you are an actor, or at least had some training and kept the vocab. I just have to say; I am not an actor , but I have "a-many "who "a- do". Honestly, rehearsing is not all it is cracked up to be. Just practice til you are satisfied.

I am glad someone asked about masquerading. I thought it was a fashion show. Comes to show I NEVER saw one.THANK YOU. If there are any more skit/masque. downloads do post back on this particualr forum.
WhiteStorm

Icetigris
12-11-2003, 11:00 PM
Heh, I've never actually seen a live one myself (too busy talking with the artists in the artists' alley =P). Maybe this Katsucon ^_^;;...

Eriol
12-16-2003, 10:07 PM
Can the jokes be more situational then paraodies of popular culture? Unless that seagulls scene is funny all by its lonesome, I'm one of the few that hasn't seen Finding Nemo.

In any case, if it's a good skit, rehearse the skit. Don't wait until the day of the con to rehearse. If you rehearse, you can get accustomed to audio cues.

In one skit I saw, the entire sound track was pre-recorded and mastered, and the actors lip synced to it. In many conventions, this is frowned upon (or results in not disqualification/inability to participate), but since this was an American Idol spoof, the pre-recorded track was appropriate.

An aside:
Icetigris, your avatar reminds me of a Fire Emblem IV (Japan) character. Is that what it is?

Eleryth
12-17-2003, 07:29 PM
In one skit I saw, the entire sound track was pre-recorded and mastered, and the actors lip synced to it. In many conventions, this is frowned upon (or results in not disqualification/inability to participate), but since this was an American Idol spoof, the pre-recorded track was appropriate.



Really?? They try to promote that (pre-recorded voicetrack) at the cons I attend. They actually WANT you to prerecord everything, because that way people can actually hear you. Maybe it's because we don't get microphones, and very few people can project that well.

I can't believe they would be disqualified for something like that. But I guess it's a case of 'different con, different rules'.

Any idea why they wouldn't allow prerecorded tracks?

Eriol
12-17-2003, 09:59 PM
Really?? They try to promote that (pre-recorded voicetrack) at the cons I attend. They actually WANT you to prerecord everything, because that way people can actually hear you. Maybe it's because we don't get microphones, and very few people can project that well.

I can't believe they would be disqualified for something like that. But I guess it's a case of 'different con, different rules'.

Any idea why they wouldn't allow prerecorded tracks?

This particular act seemed to have caught the entire audience and the non-A/V con staff by surprise. Since the other acts did not have a pre-recorded sound track, some felt this was unfair. The group mentioned that the track had been "professionally" mastered (or something close to professional). The audio quality was very good, and the segueways into and out of different music and voices worked. I think people thought it would unbalance the playing field.

The group had apparently tried to get this act going at other cons, but couldn't get on stage, so they were glad to finally be able to act this one out.

I guess I haven't visited enough cons to know if pre-recorded sound tracks are the norm.

I agree that it's needed since people can't project correctly or there is inadequate audio equipment to carry the sound. Instead of microphones, the con needs to invest in the clip microphones or microphones designed for stage performance.

Eleryth
12-17-2003, 10:19 PM
Interesting.

I can see why they might think that, unbalancing the playing field and such, but if there isn't a rule against it, then they can't really do anything, right? And was it as skit contest? or a normal masquerade, where the focus should be the costumes? In that case (the masq), I don't know how much weight I would give it for judging. There is something I have been wondering, though, after trolling thru a fans view...

Cons in the states don't use ICG rules, do they? Seems to me there is mostly judges awards and the like. Very few seem split up into novices, journeyman, master, artisan and the like. If that's the case, then I can see why one really good skit could unbalance the entire thing, if there is no category to compete under.

I really want to attend an American convention, but I am a bit hesitant with the masquerade thing. I guess I am just used to the divisions.

Miaka No Baka
12-17-2003, 10:37 PM
every con I go to requires pre-recorded tracks or at least heavily recommends it. I mean if you think about it, even if you just get together and record all the lines it still is way better than just going on stage and hoping ppl hear ur skit. I don't see it as an unfair advantage as with the times now adays burning a cd track isn't hard at all. I also heard the west coast is pro-pre-recorded and east coast is pro-not-recorded

Miaka no Baka

Eriol
12-18-2003, 10:24 AM
Interesting.

I can see why they might think that, unbalancing the playing field and such, but if there isn't a rule against it, then they can't really do anything, right? And was it as skit contest? or a normal masquerade, where the focus should be the costumes? In that case (the masq), I don't know how much weight I would give it for judging. There is something I have been wondering, though, after trolling thru a fans view...


The con had a hall cosplay and the masquerade. The Cosplay chairperson did something I like: over 60% of the points for masquerade was devoted to performance. There wasn't enough time to do a "fashion show," so this scoring method was the compromise.

I think the con didn't really have a history of pre-recorded sound tracks (especially one that was very good), so this was a first.


Cons in the states don't use ICG rules, do they? Seems to me there is mostly judges awards and the like. Very few seem split up into novices, journeyman, master, artisan and the like. If that's the case, then I can see why one really good skit could unbalance the entire thing, if there is no category to compete under.


I have never been to or read about an *anime* con that fully implements ICG rules. One trip through Fan's View will tell you which cons have tried to implement ICG rules and which have not.

The con where this incident took place used a point scoring system. The best skit was the one with the highest score. All judges were given a tally sheet with the point system explained.

I really want to attend an American convention, but I am a bit hesitant with the masquerade thing. I guess I am just used to the divisions.

You just have to read the Cosplay policies of the con you wish to attend to check on the rules. Rules do vary wildy from con to con.

If you're looking for more ICG rules compliance, try a sci-fi or fantasy con here in the U.S. They are much more in compliance than anime cons, in my opinion. You may also want to try anime cons in Canada. They seem better at ICG rules complianc.

According to your profile, you're in Japan. I think you should save your money and forget about coming to the U.S. for an anime con. XP


I also heard the west coast is pro-pre-recorded and east coast is pro-not-recorded

I think it is just whether the con has the equipment to handle pre-recorded sound track. Not every con has access to audio equipment. And no, just plopping a CD into a CD player connect to a speaker isn't going to project well enough.

Eleryth
12-18-2003, 11:20 PM
The con had a hall cosplay and the masquerade. The Cosplay chairperson did something I like: over 60% of the points for masquerade was devoted to performance. There wasn't enough time to do a "fashion show," so this scoring method was the compromise.

That's a really neat idea. I always wondered how much weight the performance got in a masq, because to some, they say 'it's all about the costume', but if you do something boring/useless/whatever on stage, it affects how they look at your costume. It's a weird little loop, or something. As long as the attendees knew about the majority of points going to the presentation beforehand, then I guess it would be fair. I would not consider it fair if they found out at the convention, or just the week before, for example.


I have never been to or read about an *anime* con that fully implements ICG rules. One trip through Fan's View will tell you which cons have tried to implement ICG rules and which have not.

If you're looking for more ICG rules compliance, try a sci-fi or fantasy con here in the U.S. They are much more in compliance than anime cons, in my opinion. You may also want to try anime cons in Canada. They seem better at ICG rules complianc.

Yeah, I can vouch for that. Anime North follows ICG rules (as far as I know, anyway), which was my first experience with such a thing. Toronto Trek does too. Seeing as these smaller cons used such a system, I assumed most cons would, so it surprised me that they didn't. It's hard to carry over your skill level and sort of level the playing field otherwise, I think. I actually quite like the ICG system.

According to your profile, you're in Japan. I think you should save your money and forget about coming to the U.S. for an anime con. XP


As you can probably tell by now, I am only here temporarily (even if that is a few years). I don't know what system they use here, but I don't think its ICG. It doesn't appear to be at AX:Tokyo, anyway (what little I know about it). I used to live near(ish) Toronto, Canada, which is why I attended the cons there, and why I want to attend an American convention. :)

Thanks a lot for the responses. I have learned more in this thread than in a long time! And I admit, I am far too lazy to go looking at every single webpage for conventions all across North America. That's far too many.

Thanks again!

P.S. Must admit, though, that I am still surprised about the microphone thing. And that the lights don't appear to be dimmed for the masquerade presentations at some of the cons. I guess it all has to do with materials and equipment, though. I was pretty lucky with my experiences.

Eriol
12-19-2003, 11:37 AM
As long as the attendees knew about the majority of points going to the presentation beforehand, then I guess it would be fair. I would not consider it fair if they found out at the convention, or just the week before, for example.

The scoring methodology (though not the actual point breakdown) was posted to the con website about 2-3 months before the con.



As you can probably tell by now, I am only here temporarily (even if that is a few years).

Not really, I didn't even think you were a Canadian native until you started espousing more about Canadian cons.


I don't know what system they use here, but I don't think its ICG. It doesn't appear to be at AX:Tokyo, anyway (what little I know about it).

ICG is a Western organization. Japanese cons probably are unaware of the guidelines.


I used to live near(ish) Toronto, Canada, which is why I attended the cons there, and why I want to attend an American convention. :)

I think once you've been to one con, you've pretty much seen it all. The events, panels, and schedules of many American cons are similar, if one looks at them in a certain way. Unless there is a superb con guest, I can only see going to a con to meet people (or meet net buddies).



Thanks a lot for the responses. I have learned more in this thread than in a long time! And I admit, I am far too lazy to go looking at every single webpage for conventions all across North America. That's far too many.


cosplay.com, cosplaylab.com, and fansview.com have a listing of conventions that run all-year round. You can at least find out how many cons are going to occur.


P.S. Must admit, though, that I am still surprised about the microphone thing. And that the lights don't appear to be dimmed for the masquerade presentations at some of the cons. I guess it all has to do with materials and equipment, though. I was pretty lucky with my experiences.

Usually, the room that holds the masquerade does not have lighting suitable for stage work. And most cons don't have theater lighting equipment to install. Only large cons like Otakon (Eastern U.S.) and Anime Expo (Western U.S.) have the resources to procure and set up stage equipment properly.

Have fun in your tour of duty in Japan! When you get back, hopefully you can publish a book on "The Anime Fandom Culture of the East and West." heh

Icetigris
12-22-2003, 07:57 PM
What's ICG? Also, the seagulls thing can be situational, as I would do it with a bunch of fangirls chasing the bishies chanting, "mine! mine!...", though, it would probably be funnier if you've seen the movie. Also, Eriol, yeah, my avatar is Clarine from FE 6.

Fire Emblem fans UNITE!!!!!!!1111

^_^

Eleryth
12-23-2003, 12:03 AM
ICG - International Costumers Guild

The seagulls thing could work, but yeah, definitely funnier if you have seen the movie.
And I, too, have been admiring your avatar. It's really cute.

Eriol
12-23-2003, 12:23 AM
What's ICG? Also, the seagulls thing can be situational, as I would do it with a bunch of fangirls chasing the bishies chanting, "mine! mine!...", though, it would probably be funnier if you've seen the movie.

Since I haven't seen the movie, I would have chuckled at this scene, only because it would represents the "fangirls chasing bishonen" gag.

For a skit, I think the concentration should be on scenes that are funny all by themselves. The best jokes and gags seem to work on two levels: the obvious joke and the more subtle joke for people that have certain experiences. Shows like Animaniacs, Tiny Toons, The Simpsons, Futurama, and The Family Guy, among many others, are well-written, because there are two meanings for many jokes on the shows. The simple part of the joke is picked up by the inexperienced while the experienced pick up the more subtle joke, based on their additional experience.

Also, Eriol, yeah, my avatar is Clarine from FE 6.

Clarine is certainly better designed than Serra. heh

Icetigris
01-04-2004, 02:34 AM
Amen to that, though, I think Clarine is a troubadour, not a cleric. So she's really more like Priscilla in terms of character class, though her personality I think is acutally a lot like Serra's. I'm not completely sure, but I have a 4-coma manga and Clarine is on a horse A LOT...and she's kind of a bitch a lot XP. Granted, 4-coma manga isn't the best source, but what can ya do when there's nothing else?

...I think I'll go start a FE thread on the game board now ^_^;

Icequeenkitty
02-02-2004, 10:45 PM
Pocky jokes?!?!? D00d, that's uberlame. I was not aware that that level of L4M3N355 was even possible...x_x Have you ever seen ppl use extras? I really want to use the Finding Nemo seagull idea... Also, does the maquerade take up a lot of time? Like, do you have to hang out backstage for hours? I want to do the artists' alley thing at next Otakon, but I also want to try out the masquerade.
Since your going to Otakon I can easily answer the time consumption question! ^o^! What they did last year was you checked in at a certain time, they handed out your masquerade badges with the time you had to report back for rehersal, (for my skit it was 11:00 am) which you don't have to be in costume for you just need your props. When you run through your skit (you usually get to watch a few skits while you wait to go on, ya know scope out the compeition mwhaha!) the judges will tell you the time it took to run through the skit (3 minute maximum). Then your told to come back about an hour and a half before the masquerade starts. This gives everyone time to stand around for about 45 minutes as the con staff goes crazy trying to find the missing skits, god bless em ^-^! Then you are wisked away back stage where you sit for what seems like an eternity! Seriously, it's not that bad though because you get to meet all the great people who love to be as dorky as you do!! So really if you want to do a skit you do get a chunk of time violently ripped away from you where you could be in the dealers room and artist alley, but it is unbelievably worth it! Once you get off the stage you are already planning your next skit! Also if you decide to go through with the skit you really should keep checking the otakon site and register online for the masquerade because there is no guarantee that you'll actually get a skit number at the con and after all that work it would really ruin the entire experience! Masquerades are completly addicting. Hope I've helped you in my ramblings!