Anime North Idol
Welcome to the page for Canada's premiere anime convention vocal competition! Have you ever had dreams of singing and performing like BoA or GACKT? Do you have a hidden talent for belting out your favourite anime or J-pop songs with total fluency? Then this is the event for you! his event aims to be a platform to showcase the great singing talent that the fans of Anime North bring to the convention. Join us at the convention and audition for your chance to perform in the finale and be crowned as this years Anime North Idol!
Anime North Idol - Auditions
Saturday: Between Noon and 2:00 PM — Room TBA
Anime North Idol - Finale
Sunday Afternoon: 2:00 - 4:00 PM in the Main Events Hall
- The competition is open to all registered convention attendees, of all ages*, to avoid conflict of interest with performances being recorded, etc. we ask that you not participate if you are a unionized performer without express permission from your union. Non-Canadian citizens are also allowed to participate.
- Contestants will be asked to read and sign the Audition and Consent Forms. Consent forms are to be submitted at the time of the audition only.
- Songs must be at least 75% Japanese in order to be used.
- Songs must be the official karaoke track (see Q&A below for more details).
- Solo performances only, no groups!
- No entourage in the audition room. Your friends can support you in line but not while you are performing.
- Must be available on the Saturday AND Sunday as auditions and the finale are taking place on both days this year.
- Contestants may choose one song from J-pop, J-rock, Visual Kei, anime, manga, game, Disney, musical, Vocaloid, J-drama, or enka sources as long as it respects the official karaoke rule (see below).
- The song may be no shorter than 3 minutes and no longer than 6 minutes in duration.
- The contestant must have the lyrics memorized. Lip synching will not be permitted.
- Songs must be provided on a CD and preferably be the only track on there. Please clearly label your CD with your track name, number, and YOUR name. No USB sticks or MP3 players allowed.
- If you are chosen as a finalist, you must bring your CD with you and arrive at the stage a half hour before the competition for sound check.
- Have fun! It's a performance to showcase your talen so enjoy yourself!
* Contestants 17 years of age and younger MUST provide a consent form signed by a parent or legal guardian at the time of the auditions.
Auditions will take place on Saturday, official times TBA. If possible, please print and fill out the audition form before arrival. If you can't, don't worry, we will have copies for you to fill out at the auditions. You will be given approximately 1 minute for your audition — roughly the length of a verse and a chorus. After you are done singing, you will be thanked and can leave. No feedback will be given during the audition process. As stated in the rules — no one else is allowed in the audition room with you, the only exception to this is the Legal Guardian for those under 17 years of age. After the auditions are completed, the finale list will be posted outside the audition room within a half hour. This year we will have a top 10 for the finale and a runner up will be chose in the event that one of the competitors is unavailable or doesn't show.
The finale will take place on the Sunday again this year with times TBA. Finalists will be asked to show up a half hour before show time for sound check. Finalists will perform their full songs in a random order and last year's winner will perform while the judges scores are tallied. The chosen winner will also be asked to perform later that day at the closing ceremonies.
Performances shall be judged based on:
- Vocal talent.
- Memorized lyrics.
- Stage presence and presentation.
- Song difficulty level, and originality.
- Judge’s personal choice.
- The contestant may perform a choreographed dance with their song and are encouraged to interact with the audience.
- The contestant is permitted to wear a costume or cosplay during the performance, but costume and makeup will not be taken into consideration by the judges for the final results.
- During the performance, contestants may not touch or approach the judges' table. Contestants may not go into the audience or attempt to do stunts or anything reckless. Remember as well, while making eye contact with the judges is nice — there is a whole audience out there you are trying to impress!
- All decisions made by the judges (auditions and finale) are final and not negotiable. The auditions and finale scores will not be disclosed.
What types of microphones will be available?
There will not be microphones for the auditions. For the finale, the contestants will use regular wireless hand-held microphones (No headsets).
What if the Idol competition overlaps with another event I want/need to attend?
We will try our best so as to not interfere with other major events, hence moving the finale to Sunday this year, so it should be far less likely for anything too big to be going on!
What do I get if I happen to win?
The winner of the competition will receive the title of “Anime North Idol 2015” and a special award. The winner will be asked to perform at the Closing Ceremonies. The winner will also have his or her badge covered for 2016 in exchange for a special performance for the next Idol competition and the Opening Ceremonies. We also usually offer the winners a chance to act as Audition Judges the following year if they are up to it.
Will video taping and pictures be permitted?
Yes. Each contestant will be required to sign a waiver that will allow pictures and video to be taken and published by the audience and Anime North staff and crew. The contestant must accept that their performance may end up on YouTube, Facebook, or other social media (and by "may", we mean "will" because there is a new YouTube channel for AN Idol where we will be posting the performances!)
Can I bring a musical instrument instead of a karaoke file?
No, only official karaoke tracks are allowed for this competition.
What is an “official karaoke track”?
The “official karaoke track” is the karaoke (voiceless) music file that is most often distributed with a given song by an artist. No other music tracks will be allowed for the competition, including home-made karaoke tracks where the voice track is digitally removed via software.
Also, make sure your karaoke file is the best audio quality you can get (128 kpbs or higher) and avoid YouTube ripoffs. The official karaoke rule is enforced in order to ensure the highest sound quality possible with the professional A/V equipment used in the main event room.
When choosing your song, make sure your karaoke is from a genuine source. A good example of a fake karaoke is “God Knows” from the anime Haruhi Suzumiya. A contestant trying out at the audition with a fake karaoke won’t be considered for the finale. You can Google discography to easily see if they have released an official karaoke track. CDs can be purchased from yesasia.com or cdjapan.co.jp if you need sourcing.
Can I pull the vocal tracks myself?
No. Doing it yourself risks "ghost vocals" and/or lower audio quality so official karaoke tracks only please!
What if my song has more English than allowed?
Then find another song please. Obviously we can discern if you are singing more English than Japanese especially because you are only given about a minute in your audition!
What if my song has a long instrumental opening? Will that affect the 1 minute I am given to audition?
No, just let us know during your audition and we will give you your minute from when the vocals start. Please bear in mind though that you need to be ready to perform and fill that space if you are on stage for the finale!
Can I change the pitch of the song?
No. Unaltered offical karaoke tracks only please.
Can I add my own backup vocals?
No. Unaltered offical karaoke tracks only please.
Can I sing an opening or ending theme song?
Yes, however please prepare the full version of the song, not the TV cut!
How can I ensure I have a good audition?
- Double check your CD and make sure it’s compatible with several players. Listen to the whole song. (We will be using VLC Media Player to run the audio)
- Practice, practice, and practice some more.
- Get your convention badge in advance.
- There is no preregistration or reservation of audition spots. So don’t be late!
- Keep in mind that we are looking for an IDOL. We will pick our finalists upon their vocal abilities, but also their confidence, stage presence, and personality.
- We’re all in this for fun, so don’t give the judges or the staff any attitude. It will end up on your score sheet.
How do I choose a good song? How can I boost my odds of winning?
A good song is one that will make your talent and abilities shine. It is better to perform an easy song perfectly, than struggle on stage with a tough one. Upbeat and catchy songs that allow the contestant to engage the audience are also good choices. Please, AVOID songs that do not have a musical introduction. And remember that you will be singing LIVE! If you have difficulty reaching that cool high note when you practice at home, the stress of the competition will most likely make it impossible. So, please choose your song wisely!
What if I don't make sound check on time for the finale?
You will be disqualified. There is going to be a runner up chosen at the audition process this year who will be contacted to replace you. Punctuality is key!
Forms and Guidelines
Thanks in advance and once again - good luck!
Andrew “Kaidaj” Scott
Anime North Idol