It’s that time of the year again, and once again, BMJ was there at the World Cosplay Summit in Nagoya to bring you the best of this year’s edition of the world’s most important Cosplay event. As every year, people from all over the world travel to Nagoya to meet at the Oasis 21 in order to share their love for Japanese popular culture and to dress as their favorite character from anime, manga or Japanese videogames. The World Cosplay Summit is a great event that allows fans of Japanese pop culture to express their passion for Japan, taking their fandom one step further, by transforming themselves into their favourite characters.
This year was one of the best editions of the WCS. First of all, the event included a record, 22 participating countries (Australia, Brazil, China, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Netherlands, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom, USA), and four observer nations: the Philippines, Vietnam, Portugal and Kuwait. The last two were invited to become full participants in the 2015 event, making Kuwait the first Middle Eastern nation ever to join one of these events. As a consequence, the level of competition reached an all time high, and the representative teams made a big effort towards not only making their costumes, but also towards their performances during the parades and the main event.
The WCS is also a great opportunity to share with fans from all over the world your passion for Japanese pop culture. During the main event, people from all over the world meet at the Oasis 21 shopping center in full costume, ready to pose for the amateur and professional photographers, share their tips for making costumes, meet new people and show their interest in cosplaying. If you are just in Japan for a short trip, it is a great chance to see the best costumes from all over the world and to take part in the international cosplay community. It doesn’t matter if you are not in costume, if you like cosplay, or anime, or if you are just curious about this Japanese subculture, a visit to Oasis 21 is definitely worth a visit.
This year is the second time that the karaoke Grand Prix took place. What started in 2013 as an experiment inviting previous participants to show their appreciation for Japanese music on stage, has now become another international contest. The same participant countries can hold their local eliminatory rounds and put forward their best singer or performer of Japanese pop music, which must be related to anime, manga or videogames. The performers must also perform in costume, which helps to create a fun atmosphere especially at the point in the contest when the audience joins the performers on the stage.
One of the big changes in this year’s event was that for the first time, the main event was held at the Aichi Arts Center Concert Hall, instead of the public stage that is in the middle of Oasis 21. On one hand, this made this event a little bit more exclusive, as you had to purchase a ticket to attend. The prices of the tickets varied from 1,500 to 2,800 yen, and were sold online. On the other hand, it made the event more enjoyable for the audience, as they were sheltered in this venue from rain and the intense heat of the Japanese summer. However there is no need to worry next year as if you cannot get a ticket, you can still enjoy the screening of the show at the Oasis 21 stage. More importantly, the following day you will be able to have a closer look at the participating teams at the parade at Osu Kannon.
To finish our chronicle of the WCS 2014, we would like to congratulate the teams of Russia, Italy and Finland for winning the first, second and third places. We would also like to congratulate team Mexico for winning the Nico Nico Douga award (Audience Favourite).
Information of World Cosplay Summit 2014