AAC Masquerade 2017 Rules

By entering the AAC Masquerade you are agreeing that you have read, understand, and will abide by all rules of the convention and event. Failure to meet all rules will result in disqualification and possible ban from entering future events.

  • In order to enter the AAC Masquerade the group leader has to be registered for the convention. The group leader is also the contact person for the group. All notices will be sent to this person and all materials needed, such as scripts, audio tracks, and any questions or concerns, must be sent from this person.
  • No Convention Staff are allowed to enter the competitive portion of the masquerade. Even if the group leader is not staff. Staff are allowed to enter an exhibition skit.
  • Volunteers are allowed to enter and compete in the Masquerade.
  • If any law is broken you will be immediately disqualified, expelled from the convention, and the proper authorities will be notified. This is including, but not limited to; live weapons, nudity, and any illegal substance use.
  • To enter the Masquerade your character(s) must originate from a Japanese Anime, Manga, or Video Game. We have a separate contest for other media that also presents with the Masquerade. If you have a character in your performance group that is not Japanese in origin (example: We would like a Lady Gaga cosplay to walk across the stage to help with the punch line of this joke.) Please contact the Masquerade Coordinators with more details or any questions.
  • A Performance/ Presentation is required for all Masquerade participants. A walk on counts as a presentation. If you wish to have your costume judged for craftsmanship and not walk on stage please see our Hall Costume Contest.
  • Each person participating in the Masquerade may only perform in one entree. If you choose to participate in two entrees then both groups risk disqualification.
  • Only Tech Staff, Masquerade Staff, and participants are allowed in the staging area back stage, unless a minor is participating and their guardian wishes to accompany them.
  • No overly sexulized acts or inappropriate language will be allowed. This is a family friendly convention, please keep all Presentations to a PG-13 rating. Failure to do so will result in an immediate disqualification and you will be put in jeopardy of being allowed to enter again.
  • All costumes must follow the convention dress code.
  • The Masquerade has 30 spots to be filled on a Juried First Come Biases. This means that entrees will be reviewed before accepted into the Masquerade, but the first entrees received will be the first to be reviewed.
  • The Masquerade entrees will stay open till all the spots are filled. Online entrees will end on October 7th any remaining spots will be filled at the convention. We do not guarantee that any spots will still be open at the Convention. If you would like to compete it is highly encouraged that you sign up ahead of time.
  • The Coordinators and Masquerade Staff will begin reviewing entries in a timely manner, and hope to send out the first batch of acceptance notices by the mid August.
  • The Masquerade has 3 skill categories, you must select one. If you have a mixed skill level group you will compete at the highest members level. Example; A group of 3 has 2 novice and a master members. The group would compete at the master level. You are always welcome to select a higher skill level than you qualify for. If it is discovered you are competing at a level lower than what your qualify for you will be disqualified.

Masquerade Categories

  • Novice – No more than one major award won previously at a comparable-sized convention or larger for their costumes or performances. These include “Best” awards and placed (2nd or higher) awards. Judges’ award and Honorable Mentions do not count as a major award. Exception, If you have won a Best In Show you no longer qualify for the Novice category.
  • Journeymen– No more than three major awards won previously at a comparable-sized convention or larger for their costumes or performances. These include “Best” awards and placed (2nd or higher) awards. Judges’ award and Honorable Mentions do not count as a major award. Exception, If you have won a Best In Show you no longer qualify for the Journeymen category.
  • Master – Four or more major awards won previously at a comparable-sized convention or larger for their costumes or performances.

Masquerade Awards

  • Judges Awards/ Honorable Mentions ~Emcee’s Award ~Convention Chair’s Award ~Coordinators Award ~Best Novice Craftsmanship
  • Best Journeyman Craftsmanship
  • Best Master Craftsmanship ~Best Novice Presentation
  • Best Journeymen Presentation ~Best Master Presentation ~Best In Show

Craftsmanship/ Pre Judging

You are not required to participate in Craftsmanship/ Pre Judging if you only wish to compete with a presentation in the Masquerade. However if you wish to be considered for the Best In Show award you need to have Craftsmanship/ Pre Judging. Please be sure to select the correct categories on the entree form.

  • All costumes and props presented for Craftsmanship/ Pre Judging must have been made by yourself or someone with in your competing group. (Exception for the youth category)
  • Costumes can consist of bought/ found materials that have been 75% or more altered. Example: Found a shirt at Good Will, to use it for Judging you must alter it such as; dying, painting, alter the neck line, sleeves, and/ or hem line.
  • Any bought or commissioned/ unaltered parts of the costume will not be considered in Judging. If you are using any such parts please be up front with the judges.
  • If you try to use a bought piece or someone elses work as your own and it is reveled to the Judges/ Masquerade staff, you will be disqualified, striped of any award received, and future participation will be in jeopardy.
  • You are required to* bring at least 1 printed reference* picture of your character to Pre Judging/ Craftsmanship. You are welcome to bring a tablet or other device to show multiple pictures and progress work.
  • Progress pictures are not required, but are encouraged.
  • Please come 5-10 minuets ahead of your scheduled judging time.
  • If you miss your time a new judging time is not guaranteed. You may be asked to come back at the end of the judging times and we will try to fit you in.
  • If you are involved with another event and would like a specific judging time we will do our best to accommodate you. Please make sure you notify the Coordinators if this is the case.

Performance/ Presentation

A performance/ presentation group is limited to 10 people on stage at a time. This is for safety reasons. If you are planing on having a group larger than 10 people please contact the coordinators with more details.

Time Limits:

Walk on – 40 seconds Performance – 1-4 people 2 minutes 5-10 people 3 minutes

  • Please no padding your performance with people for extra time.
  • If you have stage hands/ stage ninjas they will not be counted as part of the overall performing group members to give you extra time, but do count toward to 10 person limit.
  • Failure to stay with in your time limit may result in disqualification.
  • Your time starts when the lights come up and ends when they fade out/ you walk off stage.
  • Set up and break down do not count in your time limit, but please be quick. If you require extra help to speed up this process please let the Coordinators know ahead of time.

Walk On Presentations

  • A walk on presentation is limited to 40 seconds. Walk on to the stage and give some poses that show off your costume and character you are portraying, then exit the opposite side of the stage.
  • Audio for a walk on is required. If you do not supply an audio track the Masquerade staff will select music for you.
  • Your audio track must be edited to begin at the point you wish it to start playing. The staff will play the first 40 seconds then fade out of whatever track you have supplied us with.
  • No live microphones for a walk on presentation.

Skit /Performance

A skit or performance presentation must stay with in the stated time limit, unless you wish to compete as a non competitive exhibition. This means you want to show off your work with out being judged or qualify for an award. We have a very limited amount of spaces for exhibition performances. Exhibition space is open to Convention Staff and Attendees.

A brief description of your performance is required in the entree form.

  • A full script will be required if your entree is accepted.
  • Non original choreography must be limited to 30 seconds.
  • AAC Masquerade Coordinators and Staff hold the right to ask for changes or refuse entree if the script does not match the description of the entree, or contains questionable content.
  • For your and other participants safety everything you bring on stage with you must also exit the stage with you at the conclusion of the performance.
  • No loose glitter, flower petals, or confetti on stage.
  • Do not throw anything off stage. This includes at the audience or off the side of the stage.
  • Do not jump off the stage.
  • Standard entrance to the stage is enter on one side and exit the opposite side. If you would like different members to enter on different sides of the stage please mention this on your entree form. Participants are not allowed to cross behind the stage without a staff member to accompany them.
  • For your and other participants safety you must enter the stage from the staging areas on either side of the stage. No one is allowed to enter from the audience, front, or back of the stage.
  • We welcome you to surprise the audience and judges, but please don’t surprise the Masquerade Staff and Coordinators. If you are planing something unique please keep us informed and let us help you.
  • AAC maintains a you broke it, you pay for it policy. AAC owns and rents some very expensive equipment. Please always be aware and cautious of your surroundings. If you are found responsible for damaging equipment, you are then responsible to pay for the repair or replacement of it.

Performance Audio Requirements

  • You are allowed to use a live microphone for your performance. Please state that you would like to use a microphone on your entree form.
  • If you choose to use a live microphone you will be required to have a rehearsal.
  • You are allowed a background track to play with use of a microphone.
  • Pre-recorded music/ audio tracks must be sent in by September 30th. The sooner the better encase any issues arise. No music will be accepted after this time has passed, unless extraordinary circumstances arise.
  • Pre-recorded music/ audio tracks must be on a single track and include any pauses edited in.
  • All audio will be screened for content and quality.
  • AAC Masquerade Staff holds the right to refuse audio if the content is questionable or the quality presents a clarity issue.
  • If a content or clarity issue presents itself you will be notified and have a chance to resubmit.
  • Please send all audio files in an MP3 form


All presentations include a black out at the start and end of the presentation.

  • If you would like to make use of multiple lighting cues and effects you must send in a full script with lighting cues clearly marked.
  • Different lighting effects include; Blue lights, Red lights, standard White lights, and Black out.
  • If you have lighting cues you will be required to have a rehearsal.

Rehearsal Times

We have a limited amount of rehearsal time available. Rehearsal time priority is given to those with technical needs first (live microphones and lighting cues) and then to those on a first come first serve biases. Please indicate on your entree form if you would like a rehearsal time.

  • Rehearsals are suggested if you have large props, costumes, and sets.
  • You will be allowed 1 run threw of your performance.
  • Please arrive at least 10 minutes ahead of your rehearsal time, and be ready to get on stage when you are called.
  • If you miss your scheduled time you are not guaranteed a replacement time. You will be asked to come back at the end, and if there is room we will try to fit you in.
  • Rehearsals are held first thing Saturday morning.

Mixed Media Contest

  • The Mixed Media Contest is the AAC non- Japanese Media contest. It is open to all other media such as Homestuck, My Little Pony, Disney, League of Legends, BioShock, etc.
  • We have a very limited amount of entries for the Mixed Media Contest.
  • Mixed Media entries do not qualify for Best In Show.
  • The rules for this are the same for the Main Masquerade.

If you are accepted to the Masquerade:

  • You will receive an email notification of your acceptance.
  • A follow up email will be sent with specifics such as entree numbers, judging and rehearsal times, judging locations, and other information you will need prior to the convention.
  • You are expected to respond and send in all needed information and audio files by the dates given.
  • Failure to meet these deadlines may result in removal from the Masquerade and your spot will be filled from the wait list.
  • On Saturday of the convention we will have a limited space to store sets and props back stage. There are other events going on through out the day, and other staff have access to the area. We can not guarantee the complete safety of items left in the back stage area.
  • At the Masquerade its self we urged all people to please be careful of your surroundings on and off the stage. People have spent countless hours and money on their costumes and props.
  • AAC does not hold any responsibility if your prop or costume is damaged at the convention.