Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Running the Karaoke room at Anime Los Angeles 2011

While I was at Anime Los Angeles this year, I managed to achieve a staff position in the Karaoke room. Despite what I was afraid would happen, there were no truly bad singers, aside from a few people who couldn't keep up with the lyrics on the screen. During this position, I learned such skills as how to run a switchboard, and more importantly what kind of music is popular in a karaoke lounge. 

The most requested Albums for this year were:
  1. Rocky Horror Picture Show
  2. Avenue Q
  3. Wicked
While I am not surprised by the first two, I was a bit shocked by the last one. The most popular songs were:
  1. Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen)
  2. I'll Make a man out of you (Mulan)
  3. Sweet Transvestite (Rocky Horror Picture show)
Before this event, I had never heard the song “Sweet Transvestite,” but after the convention I had almost memorized it.

My duties involved managing the Karaoke machine, and announcing who was going to be singing next, along with the occasional munchie run. This managed to a lot more fun than my previous volunteer position held at Anime Expo, less because the job was easier, and more because of the nature of the work.

Being in staff allowed me to meet a lot of interesting people. I got to meet some fellow Pokemon trainers in the staff lounge, whom I managed to curb stomp. I also got to hear some of the con veterans tell me about the various conventions of old, and how things used to be run.

The people I REALLY got to know were the attendees and staff who spent most of their time in the Karaoke room. This managed to be one of the most popular locations for cosplayers to come goof off and show off their costumes. Notable people include Vash, the Organization XIII member with the lovely singing voice, the performer from the Rocky Horror Picture show who sang most of the soundtrack, that girl dressed as Jack Frost, a certain Haruhi cosplayer, and the infamous Hetalia cosplayers.

The infamous Hetalia cosplayers effectively took over the Karaoke room on Saturday night. While I understand that they made it nearly impossible to get on stage and sing due to the half-hour wait they caused, I found that they brought enough energy to the room to make my shift interesting.

Staffing at ALA proved to be about as difficult as volunteering at Anime Expo, which was quite refreshing. The management said they were trying to improve on some of Anime Expo's staffing issues. This was noticeable amoung the management on ALA, as while the manager in charge of Karaoke appeared stressed, the manager in charge of Anime Expo looked like she was about to collapse at any moment.

On a stranger note, actually hanging out the karaoke room managed to be the most interesting part of the convention for me, because it forced me to learn the most, meet the most people, and hey, it's where I met my date for the rave.

I will most likely wind up staffing Anime Los Angeles next year, although I have no idea what department I'll end up in. Hopefully it's one that manages to be as exiting.

Please Comment and Subscribe!

Related Posts:

Overview of Anime Los Angeles 2011

^Believe it or not, the guy in the center was a great singer.
This weekend I managed to make it to Anime Los Angeles, the mini convention that exists for two reasons:
  1. To give cosplayers and conventon addicts a fix until Anime Expo in summertime.
  2. Because Anime Expo has gotten too big and sold out, man

I fit firmly into the first category, since I believe the most people's definition of “selling out” to be silly. Anime Expo wants to make money, and who are we to begrudge a group for making money in a perfectly legitimate fashion?

On the other hand, some of the more hardcore anime fans need something to tie them over until summer's convention's, such as Anime Expo, Comic Con, or AM2. Plus, it's a great place to test a costume, or to meet some convention going buddies. I used to beef up my work resume, so that I can get better positions at future conventions. Hey, con hopping is NOT an affordable hobby.

I spent the majority of my time in the Karaoke room, due to the fact that I was holding a staff position there. This was very entertaining, as I met tons of interesting people, learned what kind of music kids are listening to these days, and met the girl I would be dating for the duration of the con. Full report on the Karaoke room will be posted later.

The Scott Pilgrim gathering.
COSPLAY GATHERINGS: I only attended three gatherings this year, the Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Persona, and the Kingdom Hearts Gathering. Normally, I'd say the Persona gathering was the best, but instead I'm giving this award to the Scott Pilgrim gathering. This gathering gets the reward due to having the most complete cast, along with an interesting set of poses. They managed to acquire a complete League of Evil Exes, along with variants of Romona with several hair colors.

The Persona conga line
The Persona gathering lost because a large portion of the people there were also at the Anime Expo 2010 Persona gathering, including the person hosting it. While I greatly respect the man for his dedication to Persona and organizing herds of cosplayers, way too much content was recycled, including poses. Hopefully, the release of a new Persona or Shin Megami Tensei game will make future gatherings more interesting.

I recognized these three
The Kingdom Hearts gathering was interesting, although I am a bit behind on my Kingdom Hearts Knowledge, so I couldn't enjoy everybody's costumes as much. I unfortunately do not own a PSP or a PS3, so playing most of these games is impossible. However, anybody who knows me knows the first thing I'm going to do when I get a PSP is catch up on the Persona series, so the lack of hardware may not be the issue...

AMV CONTEST: The AMV contest at this convention left a lot to be desired. While the AMV's there generally left nothing to complain about, none of them really spoke to me. In fact I would go as far as to say that my little sister could make AMV's like that (Well, she's pretty good at AMV's actually) I was mostly disappointed because I expect the AMV contest at a convention to be a bit more exiting than an AMV contest on Youtube.

THE DANCE: This convention's rave managed to be much more exiting than the rave at Anime Expo 2010, about as good as the rave at Anime Expo 2009 (That rave was so awesome most people couldn't get in.) This rave managed to be exiting, while having a large enough dance hall to accommodate the ravers at the convention. Furthermore, the DJ played a larger variety of music than the DJ at Anime Expo 2010. This managed to be a good rave, that all people could feel free to attend, like a good rave should be.

OVERVIEW: While I feel more at home in the gigantic crowds of a large convention, this convention managed to have it's own charms. That being most of the people managed to be interesting. ALA managed to have a much higher percentage of cosplayers than any other convention I had attended, along with a higher percentage of good costumes. The actual programming could not compare to the programs available at Anime Expo, but expecting it to would be ridiculous. While I overall had more fun at Anime Expo, ALA satisfied my thirst for conventions for the next few months.

Please Comment and Subscribe!

Related Posts: