The Arisia Masquerade is a costume showcase featuring your fellow convention members. It is not a contest where one costume or presentation is being compared to another, but rather an assessment of one’s own skill within their level or the success of pulling off their presentation from the audience point of view.
The Arisia Masquerade will be on Sunday at 8 PM.
Registering to Participate
The online signup form must be completed by noon Friday of the convention. After that you may register in person at the Masquerade Table. Entrants may change their information up until they leave their rehearsal time slot.
All entrants must check in at Masquerade Table on arrival at Arisia. Masquerade table hours will be:
Friday 4-9 pm
Fill out the primary contact information completely, especially the At-Con Phone Number, in case we need to contact you about your rehearsal time slot or have questions about your entry. Enter the title of your presentation next, followed by the genre, skill division, category, costume source, who designed it and who made it, and all the participant names for who will be on the stage for your entry. This information will be read by the Emcee on stage before and after your performance.
The Genre is the category the costume falls under. For example, if it’s a spacesuit it could be science fiction, or something from an Anime show, or from a fantasy story.
For Skills Division Arisia Masquerade uses the guidelines set up by the International Costumer’s Guild:
- Young Fan Division is for children age 12 and younger in costumes designed and created at home by themselves and their parents. Parents may be part of the presentation on stage as a prop.
- Novice Division is to encourage beginners in Costuming. Anyone who has not won an award for presentation is considered to be a Novice.
- Journeyman Division is an interim level to allow further development of costuming skills. If you have won a presentation award at the Novice level you can consider yourself a Journeyman. If you have won three awards as a Journeyman you should consider yourself in the Master level.
- Master/Craftsman Division is an open class for those who have won at least three awards at Journeyman level. Professionals are considered Craftsman.
For the Re-Creation category you must provide at least one photograph of the original source work. Documentation (movie stills, photographs) supporting your costume will be accepted during rehearsals or in the Masquerade Green Room during Workmanship Judging and will be returned to you following the Masquerade. For Original designs you can also provide documentation to help the Workmanship Judge in evaluating your work.
Indicate if you will be In-Competition or Out-of-Competition. If you have presented and received awards for this costume at other regional or international convention masquerades, then you should consider presenting it out of competition.
Introduction and Audio
The Emcee will introduce all entrants during the Masquerade. Entrants have options for a standard intro, or submit a personalized intro for the Emcee to read. At the Emcee’s discretion they may be willing to take part in the presentation as well.
The only audio heard during the presentation will be the Emcee and pre-recorded audio tracks played by the Tech crew. Any speech on stage will not be heard by the audience. All audio (speech and music) must be pre-recorded and provided at check in. Provide your recordings as an uncompressed WAV file on USB flash drive or CD. Bring multiple copies in case your media become unusable prior to the competition.
- Time on stage is limited to 60 seconds.
- The only person able to speak from the stage is the Emcee, who will be happy to work with you in reading a short script or may interact with you upon request.
- Each person may appear only once as an entrant on stage, except for parent-child costuming. Adults may appear as part of or supporting a child costume in addition to their own entry.
Restrictions on Costumes and Props
- All Masquerade entries must be PG-13.
- Absolutely no flame, fires, or sparks.
- If you are carrying a weapon on stage, we need to know ahead of time. Any weapon allowed in the Masquerade must adhere to Arisia Convention Weapons Policy.
- Do not decorate your costume or props with anything messy, smelly, or slimy. All parts of your costume must come in and leave with you.
- Purchased or rented costumes may not be entered in Workmanship competition; you may enter as Presentation only.
Rehearsal, Preparation, and Communication
Possible rehearsal time slots will be emailed with your Masquerade signup confirmation. Saturday time slots are longer. All participants must attend rehearsal or risk being removed from the Masquerade.
Talking to the Technical crew in advance allows them to help you make the best presentation of your costume. Tech, the MC, and the Masquerade Director must be completely aware of what you plan to do on stage. No exceptions. There will be a Head Ninja present at rehearsal to discuss what help you need getting on or off the stage, what prop help you want, etc.
You must clear all special effects with the Masquerade Director and Stage Manager at rehearsal. If your presentation involves removing or leaving any portion of your costume or props on stage this must be covered at rehearsal.
There will be a professional photographer taking pictures in the Masquerade Green Room. Photos will be available for purchase from the photographer. Audience members will be taking non-flash photos during presentations. Arisia will video record the Masquerade. If you have any questions about photography outside the masquerade you may email Click here to show mail address.
Masquerade Green Room
Check-in begins at 6:00 pm. Arrive no later than 6:45 pm or you may be scratched from the run order. You will be given the presentation order for the show when you arrive. You will be assigned a den and a Den Mom. If you need anything, please let them know. There will be a Repair Table available to cover last-minute emergencies.
The Workmanship judging will be done in the Masquerade Green Room. You will be assigned to a specific judge. Ask your Den Mom if you have questions about this process.
The Masquerade Itself
Young Fans will appear first, then Project Cosplay participants. While the Project Cosplay are on stage the Presentation Judges will decide on awards for the Young Fans. After those awards are given out the show will continue with the rest of the presentations.
There will be Stage Ninjas to assist you getting on/off stage, and to move your props. After you are finished, you will return to the Masquerade Green Room. You can watch the show on TV or join the Tactile Masquerade in the hallway outside of the Grand Ballroom. Be prepared to be called back onto the stage for awards after the Halftime presentation.
During halftime there will be an opportunity for audience members to see and touch costumes up close. Please let us know on the signup form if you wish to participate in this.
This judging will be to evaluate your performance from the point of view of the audience. The number and types of awards presented are at the sole discretion of the Judges. Awards for both Workmanship and Presentation will be announced that night after the Judges have deliberated.
After the Masquerade
A list of awardees will be published in the Clear Ether newsletter. On Monday morning you will have the opportunity to retrieve your documentation at the Masquerade Show and Tell panel where you are encouraged to share your costume story with attendees. When the photographer’s photos are available an email will be sent to you.