Jared and Anime Convention War Stories

Evening had arrived and Victoria and I had to split up to take care of our individual responsibilities.  As she went to prepare for the ball I went to prepare for my Convention War Stories panel.  I began by trying to meet up with some of my other panelists; however I had no such luck finding anyone.  Eventually I went to a friend’s room in order to cool off from the heat. 

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After a brief rest, I went out to check out a few panels and hope my team would find me.  I arrvied late to the Ball Joint Doll panel, but still got some great pictures of the little monsters.

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After the panel, I headed toward the video game room, but as I entered the room members of my crew where leaving.  We went to their hotel room to do our prep work until the start of the ball.  The line for the ball was rather long, I waited in the lobby until it cleared up then I entered to see many couple in fine dress awaiting the arrival of the princesses.  The enterance skit was fun and it was a nice way of introducing all the princesses (and princes).  There was great atmosphere and I wish I could have stayed a bit longer.  After having a few dances with the lovely Princess Mars I ran off to my panel room.   

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Convention War Stories has run at three previous conventions and has always been a hit.  This run was no exception.  I had several friends back me up at the panel including Austin Wright (Animation Liberation).  The panel was an 18+ panel and thank God it was! Things got very out of hand by the end.  So much so that I will be adding new rules next time I run this panel.

Silver Millennium Ball

The maid cafe closed down to make room for the Silver Millennium Ball. The Sailor Moon themed ball took months of preparation to get the right look and feel to fit the theme. There were plenty of dedicated cosplayers, myself included, who participated as principal Sailor Moon characters. The cast consisted of the Sailor Senshi in their princess form and the cats in their human form.

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Though the program advertised the ball to occur at 6PM, the ball started at 8PM. The ball started with the introduction of the princesses by Queen Nehelenia (and her snarky humor). Once all the princesses were assembled, Queen Nehelenia was banished from the ball, and attendees picked their favorite Sailor Senshi to dance with.

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During the ballroom dance, there was also a costume contest. The costume contest sought after who deserved to be king, queen, prince, and princess of the ball. Various cosplayers went up to show off their formal outfits. There was plenty of originality and creativity to be seen here. I was only to get a few highlights of the costume parade.

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There was plenty of dancing to instrumental anime tunes. This was a huge improvement from last year where there was hardly anything that was danceable to, at least in the respect of a waltz, swing, or tango. Not all music choices satisfied the attendees, but the music choices were very appropriate. Because this was a Sailor Moon themed ball, we had a few songs from the Sailor Moon franchise - Japanese and English - played at the dance. If only they played Mars' "Ein No Melody."

Everyone showed up in formal attire or cosplay. As long as people looked dressed up, they were let in. However, a few casually dressed types were let in. It would have been nice to see the formal dress code enforced. I would suggest the formal dress code not only apply to attendees, but to staff and press who are curious about attending and observting the ball.

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Later in the night, the Senshi Princesses had a special treat for Silver Millenium Ball patrons. The princesses danced to a Sera Myu cover of "Moonlight Densetsu," the opening theme to the Sailor Moon anime series.

After the Sailor Senshi dance, Tuxedo Mask and Princess Serenity crowned the Anime Vegas 2010 Masquerade Ball costume contest winners. The winners were allowed to do a spotlight dance once the coronation concluded.

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Senshi couples followed suit; including a daddy-daughter dance between Saturn and Prof. Tomoe. It was really cute to see Uranus and Neptune, Luna and Artemis, and Serenity and Tuxedo Mask share a spotlight dance.

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Princess Mars also had her own fun too. My friend, Emerald, who was cosplaying as a formal variation of Neptune, and I chit chatted about culture. A Zoycite cosplayer and I danced.

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However, the dance was coming to a close. It was close to the 11PM hour. The princesses agreed that our feet was sore from dancing in high heels. A trip to the hot tub or soaking our feet in warm water sounded like a good idea.

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However, we were not going to let this ball go without a hitch. The princesses pre-planned to play Lady Gaga's "Telephone" to hammer down the evening. Everyone got down on the dance floor and had a great time.

The night ended with a group photo op of the Sailor Senshi Princess crew. These are the coolest cosplayers in Las Vegas. Many thanks to Heather (Tuxedo Mask) for inviting me to be a part of the cast. I hardly get asked to do group cosplay projects, so it's a delightful honor to be a part of the crew. Learning the dance was pretty fun and it's been a while since I have done anything theatrical with a large group of people.

Overall, I am very impressed with how the ball turned out. There were some misses in the sense that the hall was nearly empty by the end of the night and that dress code was not enforced. However, I was able to work with a group of talented ladies who were really fun to work with.

I can safely say that this is the most colorful cosplay group that I have ever partaken in. Everyone looked lovely. Thanks, ladies! See you at the temple for the next senshi meeting!

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