Mainstage Cosplay is one of the highlights of Anime Iowa. You’ll have the opportunity to present your Cosplay as a Model or as part of a Skit complete with lights and sound in front of a live audience! Preregistration is required (online highly preferred).
Mainstage Cosplay Guidelines
Mainstage Cosplay has two components Workmanship and Presentation. You are not required to have your entry judged for workmanship, but you may find it an interesting learning experience
Mainstage Cosplay Divisions
- Youth – Under 13
- Novice – First Cosplay competition or first cosplay in general.
- Experienced – Several Cosplay presentations and/or have won a Cosplay award
- Master – Many Cosplay presentations and Cosplay awards would also include professional qualifications
- Exhibition – This class is for those who do not wish to compete but still want to show off their hard work. Any entry in this division is ineligible for awards. All Exhibition entries will be presented after the judges have retired for deliberation. This division is on at first come first served basis time permitting.
If you are uncertain which division your entry be in email the Cosplay Staff at email@example.com or message Lookingatthemoon on the AnimeIowa forums.
Please record all audio for your presentation. No live microphones are available for use on stage. Spoken dialog will not be heard by the audience. Edit your music and/or dialog to meet the time limit. If you need assistance with sound recording or editing contact the Cosplay Staff at firstname.lastname@example.org. Assistance with sound editing at the convention will be on a time available basis. For lack of audio there will be a list that will have pre-selected songs that are on a first come, first serve basis. We are not able to provide audio for every contestant participating the Cosplay Masquerade.
There is a 30 second presentation time limit for workmanship, 90 second presentation time limit for skits and performance. The tech crew will halt the audio and bring down the lights after the time limit runs out. In rare circumstances an entry maybe granted special permission to exceed the time limit. The maximum extension is 30 seconds. Any extension must be approved in advance by the Cosplay Director. Any help shortening or finding areas to shorten the audio can be brought to the cosplay staff at email@example.com. We will do our best to help you and will also look at content.
For Workmanship Judging in the Green Room:
- 30 seconds to explain your piece / what you made
- 30 seconds for the judge to look over your piece
- 30 seconds for a questioning period for the judges to understand your design and build process
This is just a guideline, not a strict timeline and you will not be judged on how long you talk
Mainstage Cosplay Contest Rules
- NO GLOMPING at all… ever. ‘Nuff said. It’s dangerous.
- All Cosplay participants must be registered attendees of the AnimeIowa convention. This event is open to all members including staff assuming your duties allow. If you volunteer regularly, please let the person you are volunteering know when you have to be let go to participate.
- Presentations may not exceed their designated time limit. The Tech crew has explicit instructions to cut lights and sound at thirty seconds for workmanship and ninety seconds for performance. Plan ahead. If you need assistance with editing your music/sound contact the Cosplay staff prior to noon on Saturday.
- NO blatant nudity. This event is rated PG-13. Please use some discretion with your character, props and presentation content. A helpful hint is to use skin tone leotards and such to keep everything covered.
- The following may not be worn for competition: wholly purchased costumes without significant modifications, rented costumes or entries that have been previous winners at AnimeIowa. These may be entered on stage in the Exhibition Category but will not be eligible for awards.
- Youth participants must be accompanied by a responsible paid adult member at all times.
- Your entry must be finished before you get to the Green Room. No sewing, gluing, spray painting, welding, or other construction work is allowed back stage. However, final assembly of large pieces and/or props and unexpected repairs will be allowed. There will wig workshop spaces for hair malfunctions, however the Anime Iowa staff are not always able to help. Also, participants cannot show up in Cosplay central to create a cosplay entirely out of our supplies. The supplies are limited and we would like to be able to provide them for all attendees.
- Cosplay Central does have some emergency repair supplies and the Cosplay Staff may be available to help with emergencies or damage repair. AnimeIowa does not supply participants with any of the following: makeup, makeup applicators and/or removers, paint, etc. Please come to the convention with everything you need to complete and/or assemble your cosplay.
- Participants will be required to sign a liability release and a limited release for use of video and photo images. This will be posted later, and we will inform you of when this is available.
- For safety reasons, the following are not allowed:
- *Live animals
- *Substances which might damage or soil
- *Aerosol sprays
- *No pyrotechnics will be allowed including but not limited to: fire, flash powder, explosives, smoke bombs or fireworks.
- *Entries that could potentially damage the Convention Center facilities, other participants or the wearer will not be allowed.
- *Illegal weapons of any kind are not allowed.
- Legal real or prop weapons used as part of the costume are allowed with restrictions. You are expected to act responsibly with your weapon. The Green Room is not the place to practice your presentation’s sword play! You may be asked to check your weapon in to our Props Master prior to the start of the Cosplay if we deem the weapon potentially dangerous to your fellow participants. If you decide to carry a weapon, by signing your registration form, you accept any legal and financial responsibility for damage your weapon may cause to persons or property. Normal AnimeIowa Weapons Policy rules apply. Don’t be a Dink!
- Entries with electric power requirements need to be self-contained. There will be no access to electrical outlets on stage.
- Participants who want to use special effects in their presentations (i.e. strobe lights, fog, etc.) must notify the Cosplay Director no later than 2 p.m. Saturday. The Cosplay Director has the right to deny requests for special effects due to safety concerns and building regulations. Do not plan your presentation around unapproved special effects!
- Surprise the audience, not the Cosplay staff. If you are planning something completely different, let us know well in advance. All information will be held in the strictest confidence.
- Smoking is not allowed in the Convention Center. Contestants who leave the building for a smoke break may lose their turn to appear on stage. You wil be kept up to date on when you are up to go on stage, so plan accordingly.
- No Whiners! All judge’s decisions are final.
- The Cosplay Director has the right to eliminate any entry from the competition on the basis of taste, danger to the audience, building or yourself. Violation of any of the above rules, or any other reason deemed sufficient.
We have never had to eliminate anyone yet, so let’s keep it that way!
- There will be a required meeting for all groups. As many people should be able to attend but we understand if AT LEAST one person per group to be allowed in group. The time of this panel will be determined and posted at a later time. Last year this was not enforced, simply for the lack of informing the participants. Posting this earlier gives a better chance of reaching everyone. If you absolutely CANNOT make one of our panels, then you must talk to the staff ahead of time to arrange the time to get that information so you are not out of the loop. Also after this panel there is an opportunity for all those who are performing to give us a preview, get advice from experienced cosplay participants and help improve your overall performance. (This is highly recommended because the group who won Best skit in 2012 used our advice)
- Any large set pieces like tables and chairs can be requested and to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please have descriptions because we would like to help you in any way possible.
Mainstage Cosplay Sign-up
Use this form to sign-up ahead of the convention to appear in the Mainstage Cosplay event.