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Author Topic: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback  (Read 3387 times)

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Erik_anderson

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Please provide honest feedback, provide suggestions on what can be done better for every criticism.
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Freeden

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #1 on: May 27, 2014, 11:28:39 PM »

It was honestly extremely underwhelming. I didn't like the MC. He tried too hard and he kept trying to apologize for Fanime's past mistakes. I don't think the MC of the masquerade needs to apologize. Just show us that it's improved with action, not words. It also seemed very short. I did like the intermission performances and the costumes were all great. My main suggestion is, please get a new MC. If you guys can maybe get a voice actor like other cons or someone else who entertains for a living. Past MC's at Fanime have been great. I don't know that the amount of masquerade performers were in Fanime's control, but I was surprised to see such a limited number and to be out by around 7. I didn't go to Masquerade last year, but previous years have been better, mostly because of better skits. I also preferred when Fanime did walk on's first and skits after, but that's just my personal preference. Overall, it was a fairly mediocre Masquerade.
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Mango Bunny

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #2 on: May 28, 2014, 02:29:20 AM »

The line sucked. We got in line early to get a good seat. We asked info to confirm the start time of 5pm since we didn't have our paper schedule on us. They said 4. We got in line at 3:15 or so. Then we came to find out info was wrong. Then the whole shebang got pushed back another half hour. You know what is the worst thing about having the masquerade early? Waiting in the hot as lava sun. I stood in the sun with nowhere to sit the entire time. I got sick from it, actually. I started getting really dehydrated and not great feeling, but I didn't have anything I could do about it.
We got in eventually and I felt sick through the whole event.
The masquerade usually has an intro video (we have for most years) and an opening act. The band was a horrible experience, so I am not complaining about that, but we've had other performances such as taiko or martial arts that were really fun. They set a tone for the event and reeled people in. This year the MC stood up, basically said that this one wouldn't suck and left. Oh, after someone messed up the first walk on.
A few years ago Fanime made a move to separate walk-ons at the beginning because we were getting so many, and because it's really depressing when we hear "This is the final act! Please welcome..." and it's a character that walks on and leaves. That happened this year, and honestly it kills any momentum the show has when it's constant walk-ons.
The MC is lackluster, I appreciated the more to the point approach this year, as I wasn't the biggest fan last year. It just doesn't work. Please consider another MC. He seems like a good guy, but he seemed like people were rushing him to stop talking and it was sort of weird.
I felt like performances this year were lackluster. There were some fun ones, but it seemed like there wasn't a lot of variety or excitement. I think this was compounded by the walk-ons.
The intermission was cool, but I was going to stand up to find a drinking fountain and then suddenly things were happening. That's not really an intermission. Their performance was good. It's too bad everyone had already started walking out and the lights were on, but also sometimes off.
It was really disorganized. The music timings and lighting and so forth were still all over the place.
The whole thing felt rushed and short, and I walked out feeling sick from the sun and dazed and confused by the presentation.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2014, 02:37:19 AM by Mango Bunny »
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Amanojaku

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #3 on: May 28, 2014, 09:01:35 AM »

Could have used a dose of Ric Meyers.
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Erik_anderson

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #4 on: May 28, 2014, 09:08:16 AM »

Freeden

Thank you for the feedback.  The number of entries are not under our control, but there was some issues with the website and registration that we are solving for next year that would greatly improve the number of entries. 

On the rest of the feedback for the MC, I'll take this into consideration.


Mango Bunny
Thank you for the feedback, you make some good points.
Quote
The line sucked. We got in line early to get a good seat. We asked info to confirm the start time of 5pm since we didn't have our paper schedule on us.
Next year we will be using a new line system which will have a maximum wait of 15 minutes.  This involves going to the masquerade site anytime sunday and getting a sticker and a hand stamp.  Depending on the time and order this will be a set color. Then return 15 minutes before the show, get into the line matching the color of your sticker and then the doors open. Those with the earliest color go in first, followed by the next and so forth. 

Also we will have the time of the show and information distributed clearly in the pocket program, program guide and banners around the convention.


Quote
The masquerade usually has an intro video (we have for most years) and an opening act. The band was a horrible experience, so I am not complaining about that, but we've had other performances such as taiko or martial arts that were really fun. They set a tone for the event and reeled people in.

The intermission acts were planned for the opening, but we had to move them up because our original intermission act fell through.  Next year we plan to have more up front, including a opening intro while the audience gets seated.

Quote
This year the MC stood up, basically said that this one wouldn't suck and left. Oh, after someone messed up the first walk on.

The start of the show mishap was a finger being lifted from the start button.  We will learn from this, but as you can imaging we had to make some changes on the fly by this point.

Quote
A few years ago Fanime made a move to separate walk-ons at the beginning because we were getting so many, and because it's really depressing when we hear "This is the final act! Please welcome..." and it's a character that walks on and leaves. That happened this year, and honestly it kills any momentum the show has when it's constant walk-ons.

I have mixed feelings about separating walk-on acts from skits, for one thing it means there is little to no actual performance for the walk-ons and its very awkward in my eyes to see someone go out on a quite stage and wave to the audience and walk off again.  You don't really get to see their outfit, there is no actual play in their cosplay and its visually jarring.  This year we required all acts have sound and we worked with contestants to have sound and light effects that enhanced their performance. However we are going to structure the acts more to make a better show and end on a bang. 

What we may do is separate the two, but push more of the act to be at a minimal a performance, not simply a walk on.

Quote
The MC is lackluster, I appreciated the more to the point approach this year, as I wasn't the biggest fan last year. It just doesn't work. Please consider another MC. He seems like a good guy, but he seemed like people were rushing him to stop talking and it was sort of weird.

He has been learning the ropes and I very much appreciate his assistance in the show.  It is a big burden to carry a whole show, get everyone name right and not try to become part of the show. There are some ideas to reduce some of this burden and to allow him more time to interact with the audience.


Quote
The intermission was cool, but I was going to stand up to find a drinking fountain and then suddenly things were happening. That's not really an intermission. Their performance was good. It's too bad everyone had already started walking out and the lights were on, but also sometimes off.

Next year we plan to have a true intermission, with a passive video on a loop and encourage folks to get up stretch, get water and user the facilities.

Thank you both for your feedback.
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Mango Bunny

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2014, 12:58:53 PM »



Mango Bunny


I have been wondering how that new system will work. Won't it create a line earlier?
The structure was miles better than last year, I know it's a lot of work. I do wonder if the added effects that have been used are worth it if it seems to put so much strain on the staff.
Intermission didn't really need an act, I felt bad that they were so great but people were up and leaving. Intermission is supposed to be when you get up, not just another part of the show. I think next year's plan sounds better in that regard.
And I know the MC is working hard at it. Last year when people were really frustrated I heard some cruel things yelled out of that frustration, so I do think he's gutsy coming back. I just think his presence could be worked on.
All complaints aside, I will be coming back next year, as I always do.
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Erik_anderson

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2014, 02:16:36 PM »

Quote
I have been wondering how that new system will work. Won't it create a line earlier?
If done right, no line.  You walk up get a hand stamp and a sticker and walk off until 15 min before the start of the show.  The "lanes" are about 200 people long.  People who absolutely want to be first in line could possibly try to line up before but its not like you would get dramatically better seats.

Quote
The structure was miles better than last year, I know it's a lot of work. I do wonder if the added effects that have been used are worth it if it seems to put so much strain on the staff.

it was actually a key document that was overridden and the need for more rehearsal time that but the biggest strain on the team.  I've taken steps to remove this issue now, for next year.

Quote
Intermission didn't really need an act, I felt bad that they were so great but people were up and leaving. Intermission is supposed to be when you get up, not just another part of the show. I think next year's plan sounds better in that regard.

Next year the intermission will have no acts, but we will have the walk-on acts go to platforms set up around the floor where people can get a good look at the outfits and take pictures. other then that, it will be a chance to get  drink, stretch legs and go to the bathroom.

Thank you again for the feedback
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CeruleanRogue

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2014, 02:51:28 PM »

Erik, you, Jack, and the entire crew did a great job this year.  It went 100x better on the participants' side of things than last year's did.  I did note a few improvements on my feedback form, but forgot to add something on the rehearsal/soundcheck side.  My partner watched the first half of Masquerade before he had to return to G.R., and he noted that the audio on the majority of the skits was louder than it needed to be and seemed a bit unbalanced at times.  If that can be worked on for next year -whether part of rehearsal or otherwise- that would be great.

I think my only other quibble was with how the awards were done this year.  I'm not saying to give everyone an award, but it seemed a bit odd to totally eliminate the performance awards.  (Even my partner noted that seemed slightly unusual.)
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Erik_anderson

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2014, 02:50:52 PM »

Hi CeruleanRogue

Quote
My partner watched the first half of Masquerade before he had to return to G.R., and he noted that the audio on the majority of the skits was louder than it needed to be and seemed a bit unbalanced at times.  If that can be worked on for next year -whether part of rehearsal or otherwise- that would be great.

Next year we will have by appointment rehearsals starting as early as 9am. This will allow us to sort through these issues including providing good light levels for costumes and working with new performers on their acts. 

We also plan to host panels:
 - Meet the judges
 - Your First Masquerade
 - Audio and Lights for the Stage
 - Stage Makeup


Quote
I think my only other quibble was with how the awards were done this year.  I'm not saying to give everyone an award, but it seemed a bit odd to totally eliminate the performance awards.  (Even my partner noted that seemed slightly unusual.)

That was my misstep and Ive added in some distinct performance, here is the provisional list https://bitbucket.org/appsense/datanow-server/branch/Iteration88
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toraraven

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #9 on: May 30, 2014, 01:21:44 AM »

I have mixed feelings about separating walk-on acts from skits, for one thing it means there is little to no actual performance for the walk-ons and its very awkward in my eyes to see someone go out on a quite stage and wave to the audience and walk off again.  You don't really get to see their outfit, there is no actual play in their cosplay and its visually jarring.  This year we required all acts have sound and we worked with contestants to have sound and light effects that enhanced their performance. However we are going to structure the acts more to make a better show and end on a bang. 

I honestly find that shows that mix them together are really confusing. I went to a convention a little while ago that did this and also made walk-ons have more of a performance aspect, and I honestly couldn't tell if they were supposed to be a walk-on or an actual skit then. As someone who was considering being a walk-on at Fanime in the future, I find the requirements discouraging since if I wanted to actually "perform" in any capacity I mind as well create a real skit and enter as one of those. Why not take a cue from other large conventions on how they structure their walk-on performances? Usually it isn't just "go on stage and wave and get off" but usually they're required to be on stage for about 30 sec. and they strike quite a few poses, maybe on different parts of the stage for photographs. The music and light effects could still be customized that way...
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Erik_anderson

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2014, 10:04:12 AM »

Hi toraraven

Quote
Why not take a cue from other large conventions on how they structure their walk-on performances? Usually it isn't just "go on stage and wave and get off" but usually they're required to be on stage for about 30 sec.

I'm definitely of the mindset that the bigger conventions get more things wrong more then they get things right, mindset.  For one thing many of their contests are based on either a costume contest grown too large or on a 'got talent' tv show model that is more interested in the judges and their drama then the quality of the acts.  An example would be that Syfy show.

That said i think the most separation I may do is by having a Part A for walk-on acts and a Part B for performances.  During the intermission we will encourage the walk-on acts to use platforms set up around the hall to allow the audience member who are not going to the bathroom, getting water and so on, to see them up close and the take pictures of them.  This I think could be a great addition and give both the audience and the contestants.

Again, thanks you for the feedback and lets keep making the show better

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Tris-chan

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #11 on: May 30, 2014, 11:58:42 AM »

When I think of well-done walk-on performances (and thus what minimum requirements should be) I remember AX from years ago. There was a pair of Hellsing cosplayers who were on stage for 30-45 seconds, with themed music, and who did three or four in-character poses. That could be a good minimum; it shows the judges how the costumes move, allows there to be a smidge of performance, plus it allows any press photographers some good posing time.

Just a thought!
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Erik_anderson

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2014, 08:53:29 AM »

Hi Tris-chan

Thank you for the feedback, keep it coming.

Quote
plus it allows any press photographers some good posing time.

We actually give press photographers their own area with better lighting and the ability to set up poses with a proper backdrop.  Next year we will do more for them, but they get about 5 - 8 minutes with the contestants to get the best shots possible.

Any press photographers who read this, I would love more feedback from you.
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PrincessSquib

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2014, 11:08:30 PM »

Hi Eric!

I'll try to give my feedback on everything that you've asked, as well as add some of my own:

1) Continue to push the walk-on performance to use lights, music and have an act.
-Yes please! Though I like seeing what I believe is the "Walk-On Parade", it gets boring. Lights, voice, sound, or a gesture would greatly improve these walk ons.

2) Return to a part A part B for the masquerade with the first being the walk-ons and the second being performances (skits).
-I actually didn't like how this used to be set up. I know of people who deliberately didn't show up to the first part of the masquerade because they knew it was going to be walk-ons. I like that they were sprinkled in with the skits this year.

3)  In the intermission (which will be a real intermission), the walk-on act will go down to raised platforms on the floor to allow attendees to see them up close and take pictures of them.
-I think this could apply to everyone who hadn't gone on stage yet. so maybe a photo shoot for acts 1-25 get to shoot at intermission, and 25-55 can shot while the judges are deliberating. Everyone should be able to participate in this to meet and excite the audience.

4)New QR code digital program book for attendees to download and know the name of the acts and who they are.
-That would be interesting for those who have a smart phone, and assuming the internet works, could be really cool. But would it distract from the performances? Maybe scan and download the program book while in line, or right as you walk in, so they can look while they wait?

5) Adding more performance specific awards like Most Dramatic performance, Best Comedy, Ect. These would have cash awards
-I know these used to be an award. I tried for the comedy one three years ago. It would be great to have a few awards like, "Best Dramatic", "Best Comedic", "Audience Favorite/Loudest Applause", "Most Similar to the Anime", or "Best Audience Participation". The latter three would not be large cash prizes, but enough to buy yourself a small trophy. I did that last year with our best choreography $35 winnings.

6) Increasing the size of prizes to be more inline with the wider convention circuit.
-That would be nice, but maybe hold off on the $1500 grand prize of comic con for a while? I think 500, or 750 is a decent grand prize...prize. Unless you're talking about bumping up all of the prizes, then go for it. Its not something that I have a huge opinion about.... Could the money be used elsewhere? Maybe the future fashion show? If so, wait a few years until both events get a little stronger.

7) Having scheduled rehearsals starting at 9am for performances. these would allow contestants to work on the act, solve any tech issues and get lunch and a break before coming back for the show.
- SCHEDULES WOULD BE AMAZING. Not that I don't love playing battle royal for the 11:30 or later spot, but dictating a time would squash all complaints.

8) Video in the green room, benches on the stage waiting area.
- I really love this idea. I don't get to see the skits that are on stage while I'm backstage, and it always seems to be the best ones I miss. A small video monitor would be great. Benches.... it doesn't seem to matter much, many people can't sit down in their costumes anyway. Maybe have a few chairs, but the floor is my best friend. Its always there for m. :D

Extra comments:
-These are things that I thought could be improved for next year:

**Cosplay Masquerade/Spectacular Advertising: It was virtually nothing. I looked in the large book and it says the name and then says "look to your pocket guide for details!", so I look at my pocket guide, and I have to ask three staff members where to find it in the book. Teeny tiny writing that didn't stand out. There were no announcements that I heard on Sunday, and no posters like last year. I believe this is why there were a noticeably smaller amount of people there. Only 1500 maybe? I didn't bother to check. I saw many more empty seats than last year.

**Photography. I had  problem with this myself. It said judging was at certain times in the day, so I went Saturday with my boxes of costumes. The photography was there too, which was new. Only after you pointed it out did I realize it said Judging AND Photography. Whoopsie. So I figure we'll get pictures taken when we do the cosplay spectacular on Sunday. Well.. We get there and there's no photographers in sight... bummer. We go backstage before the show and wait to go on, we go on, and no photographers in the hallway either. Around act #12 or# 13, we get pulled aside from our seats and were asked if we took pictures yet. Well... no. We haven't, and now two of our group members went to another event. A little notice would be nice... I would like to request that all photos be taken before the show, when we're just sitting around because our call time is 3:00, and the show doesn't start until 5, or 5:30. Taking photos after is a terrible idea. People are sweating, costume pieces could have broken, people could have went home. I would like photos to be taken during the practice or waiting period.

**This Event V.S. Other events: I love to participate in EVERYTHING. I signed up for the chopped cosplay this year, and won first place mind you, and the masquerade as well. I would love to do these two in the future, along with the fashion show. But my fear is that all of those times will overlap. Many large events are on Saturday, shopped cosplay was on Friday and Saturday night, and the masquerade is on Sunday. Maybe have the fashion show on Saturday morning/afternoon to get things rolling? Sunday would be too busy, and Friday may not have enough people there. Saturday afternoons and evenings are the dance, main events, stage zero events, major signings, and bands playing. It might be too busy. I think Saturday morning maybe at 10, or 11 am would be best.

**Content of the Masquerade costumes:
-Not that I don't enjoy Elsa and the Ice King fighting... it just isn't anime. The rules have always been that the costumes need to be of Asian influence or decent. The past few years, this rule has slacked. Wreck it Ralph, and other Disney characters have appeared on stage. I really enjoy it, but can we amend the rule then? Maybe "It must be of Asian affiliated, or have come out between this Fanime and last Fanime" So its relevant? I can imagine there could be many more applicants, but again, its and Anime con, not an Animation Con. I wouldn't mind cosplaying as a Disney princess on stage though. :D

These are my thoughts.
-Princess Squib

Mod edit: its called a dance
« Last Edit: January 09, 2016, 06:28:55 PM by ewu »
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Cosplays That I'll Be Making For Fanime 2015:
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-Elsa
-Jack Frost
-Hyrule Warriors Link
-Resident Evil 5 Safari Chris Redfield

wolfdaemon

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #14 on: November 18, 2014, 08:13:13 PM »

I agree with the majority of PrincessSquib's commentary, minus this section:

'Maybe "It must be of Asian affiliated, or have come out between this Fanime and last Fanime" So its relevant?'

The thing I love most about Fanime is that you generally have a slightly older crowd attending the con.  I find it silly that we should limit the entries fandoms based on what's new and popular.  Many of my friends prefer this con to be their "nostalgia" con and bring back their favorite series that may be as old as 15 years.  I personally don't follow things as they come out because the fandoms are insane.  I ease into them after they've been out for a while and the hype has died down.  While I do agree that the skits and walk-ons need to be Asia-oriented, I don't believe there should be a time slot that people have to fall into.  The character that I'd like to create for next year is from 2005 ((damn... doesn't feel that long ago))
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Erik_anderson

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Re: FanimeCon Masquerade, Cosplay Spectacular official feedback
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2015, 06:00:29 PM »

Hi PrincessSquib,

Some updates on your feedback

Craftsmanship judging has moved to Sunday Morning and is part of the the rehearsal time. Judging will not start at 1:00 pm Sunday.  This is done for a number of reasons
1. it allows our judges to enjoy the convention themselves
2. It allows contestants to get in everything setup and relax.
3. it opens up two rooms for costume construction program panels/workshops the rest of the weekend.

Official photography will be done as you exit the stage left.  You will go down a few steps and be in the photography area.  Once done you can then walk around and join your seats rather then past the rest of the contestants.  this should ease traffic flow and again frees up our photographer and competitors time. 

Intermission: We will have a real honest intermission this year.  15 minutes to get up and take a break, nothing will go on but some music and if you want people can take pictures on platforms provided around the civic center.

Prizes and awards: separate thread on this, but I have things in the works that should


Now I do have a slightly evil reason for working very hard to free up all your time.  Next year will be the start of the Fanime Cosplay fashion folio design competition.  This will likely take place Saturday morning/midday or Friday night and I want you all able to enter and compete in it. 
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