Released on behalf of Melissa Dillon (melissa.dillon[at]northernanime.ca), public relations coordinator for Northern Anime Festival inc.
Oshawa, Ontario, Canada (June 2nd 2006) – Northern Anime Festival® 2006 is pleased to announce this years round of guests at its third annual Anime and Manga convention on July 22nd 2006 at the Durham College. Further information is available at http://www.northernanime.ca
Lisa Furukawa Ray
Lisa Furukawa Ray is a Japanese-American pianist, singer, and songwriter. Utilizing her talents in contemporary and classical music, Lisa’s performances and recordings display a fusion of Japanese folk, alternative pop, and electronica.
Her latest recording, "Reaching the Dragon" was released in April, 2006. Lisa composed, produced, and performed all of the songs on the new CD. The new work displays a subtle combination of electronic arrangements, piano, and vocals in Japanese and English.
"Reaching the Dragon" is ambient and lush, and remains hopeful even through the most melancholy moments. Always fascinated by myth and history, Lisa looked to the Eastern myths and folklore of dragons for inspiration. Lisa says, "Reaching the dragon is about tapping into the yang spirit, strong basic life force, and accepting change and transformation."
Lisa has three CDs of original songs published through her Yume label. Her first recording, “This Moment is the Show,” is an intimate CD of solo piano and vocal arrangements. Her second CD, “Pearl Diver,” is a collaborative piece that originated from Lisa’s piano and vocal compositions, but was realized and recorded with cellist, Deborah Shields and percussionist, John Metcalf.
Lisa has performed at various events and festivals, and has entertained audiences in large and small atmospheres. Currently, she is enjoying her appearances and performances at various anime conventions and cultural events around the US and Canada. She is exploring the electro/dub sound while composing for the multi-art and multimedia dance troupe -The Wandering Star Project. She hopes to continue pushing technological boundaries while continuing to contribute a lyrical vocal element to electronic music. Lisa has performed in the soulful dream-pop group the Lovestars, and has enjoyed collaborations with other musicians and film makers. When she isn't performing or teaching, she contributes her time and efforts to helping several charitable organizations by directing events such as the annual Tori Amos Tribute Show/RAINN Benefit and the Triangle Asian-American Music Festival.
Originally from Tokyo, Japan, Lisa began studying the piano at the age of three. She has BA’s in Music and Asian Studies from UNC-Chapel Hill, and is an educator and translator as well as a performing songwriter. She has translated everything from pop tunes to state songs into Japanese, and hopes to promote cultural understanding and diversity through music.
Not everybody knows this, but this guest is known as the "voice" of countless children's television shows, commercials, & various anime characters in "Totally Spies". If you need a voice coach or help in spicing up a commercial, this is the man to go to. Besides doing voice-overs, he also does physical comedy, acting, singing and broadcasting.
This laid back man has been in this business for years, despite his youthful look and demeanor, so he is a veteran of the media that will surely please just about any crowd.
An avid player of the piano, this man is 24 years of age and has started an interest in playing music since he was 7. Mark's interest in anime and video game songs combined with playing the piano when he first played Final Fantasy II/IV. The interest and amount of beautiful songs that Mark remastered from various games and animes went on from there and in great volume. Mark is willing to take requests and will be handing out sheet music of songs he will be playing for other people who are interested in playing these songs right on your own piano. Some video games that he is involved in playing songs from include "Chrono Trigger", "Final Fantasy III/VI", and "Super Mario Bros. III".
This charming, often hilarious but cute comic "VG Cats" was created by this author. It's just right on the Internet for easy reading and high entertainment. In around 2003, Scott started posting this comic on the 'net that is very much the same setup as "8 Bit Theatre", which is also very high quality and clean looking. This comic is drawn in anime style with these adorable cats as the main characters and is good for most anime fans alike. "VG Cats" also appeals to video gamers, because the comic is mainly about bashing the video game industry. Either type of people will immensely enjoy this comic's brand of humor and animation.
Anthony Chau a.k.a. The Forge of Hephaestus
This guest is a big mentor for people who are into anime cosplay and the making of them. Anthony Chau uses a very interesting method to make these state of the art armor costumes. He uses vacuum forming by heating plastic and forming it over any mould that you want. The really neat thing about vacuum forming is that the equipment used for it is most likely available in your house. The Forge of Hephaestus currently makes really hardcore, right-on-the-detail armor costumes for the animes "Record of Lodoss War" and "Bubblegum Crisis, 2040". Anthony will be teaching a seminar on how to make this armor conveniently at your own home and at a low cost.
Les Major's work will very likely stick out in your mind. His new cartoon "FantaSize" made its debut at this last convention right on DVD. "FantaSize" is a dark comedy that is difficult to forget once you’ve watched it. The plot alone is highly original and different. "FantaSize" is about a Gothic girl named Misery. She is the main character of this series and she starts the first episode off by getting home from a bad day at work and stumbling upon these groups of little people that she finds in various places in her house. At first Misery believes she is going crazy, but as the pilot episode goes on, she slowly starts to dislike the little people. After this movie has been seen, Les has become a topic of hot conversation in the anime convention culture.