Insomnia Cosplay Community Masquerade (Sunday 2:45pm-3:45pm)

Costume and Play is proud to present the Insomnia Cosplay Community Masquerade! If you have an amazing costume you’ve poured hours into, and now want to bring it to life on stage with a performance, then signing up to the Insomnia masquerade provides you with that opportunity! After all, what is costume without the play?

The Masquerade will be held Sunday: Expo Stage – 2:45pm-3:45pm.

So how will the competition be working this time?

Cosplay has always been a community experience, for making friends, presenting your hard work across and ‘playing’ or performing as your character on stage. Costume and Play wanted to combine all of this together and offer a fantastic prize at the end. 

  • Show off your work. – Two more opportunities to show your work to the judges! (Read more in the pre-judging section)
  • More points for your performance. – A slightly higher emphasis has been placed on performance, we all know you can rock the stage so we’ve adjusted the masquerade to reflect this.
  • A cleaner sign-up form. – now you’ll be able to really concentrate on award winning answers for the judges to see.
  • No competition pressure. – A few places reserved for those wishing to put on a spectacular performance, and the cosplay community masquerade remains on Friday! (Sign up here – )

The Costume Part:

  1. Costumes from any genre of video game, television, film, book, anime, manga, original design etc. may enter the Masquerade.
  2. All costumes, including those that are brought, are allowed to enter the cosplay community masquerade.
  3. An altered costume will be eligible to receive points in the Craftsmanship category for specific components which are heavily altered or handmade entirely. All costumes will qualify for Character Concept and Performance categories.
  4. Any size group may enter the Masquerade. However, if eligible for a prize, this will be split evenly between participants.
  5. The competition is open for all ages, but if you are under the age of 13 please make sure to get parental consent.


The Performance Part:

  1. You may perform to music and/or use a microphone during your performance. If you do not provide music, generic music will be provided for you.
  2. Performances/Skit tracks must be no longer than one minute and thirty seconds in length. Please state the length of your skit time or if you are posing (e.g three point system) on your application form. If you have additional requirements for stage (such as placing something on stage for you,) this does not count towards your track time allowance, however you must contact us beforehand and make sure we can complete these for you in a reasonable time frame.
  3. We highly advise you visit the cosplay desk no later than two hours before the masquerade is due to start to check through your requirements. If you do not visit the desk, your requirements for your performance may be refused.
  4. Arrive at the designated area ready NO LATER THAN half an hour before the       masquerade is due to start.

We ask you to specify any requirements for your performance on your application form. This includes setting up a ‘cue’ for when you would like your music track to begin.          

*All entrants must comply with the Cosplay Masquerade General Ruleset and Props Rules.

The judges have various awards ranging from ‘Best Performance’ to ‘The One to Watch Award.’ Judges also have the ability to award special honour mentions for something they love, they are used to encourage you to think outside the box and have fun!



The quality of costume, props and accessories; and how well these elements are made.


Takes into account use of general performance conventions and how you interact with the audience; for example confident movements as well as general stage techniques used through performance.

Character Concept

This category is judged based on execution of your character concept and a clear display of character choice, be it accuracy to a character, a creative interpretation (e.g Steampunk Harley Quinn or cross play) or character likeness.


Additional Points may be awarded for detailed application forms including reference pictures and construction notes but this does not form an active judging category for the community masquerade.Each portfolio should be 5-10 pages long and not exceed 20 pages. Portfolios longer than 20 pages will not be printed.

Traditionally costume and play carried a very informal ‘line check’ where judges would walk up and down the line speaking to costumers about their creations and learning further information from the sign up form. This traditional method will still be in place, however we have also included two further, non-compulsory, but highly recommended, opportunities to spend time displaying your costumes to the judges.

Masquerade Performance Rehearsal and presenting cosplay work to the judges.

Costume and Play will host a performance based workshop, aimed to encourage and warm up participants for the competition, the floor will then be opened up to allow cosplayers to rehearse alongside their music track.

During this time judges will have the opportunity to chat to costumers (similar to line up) about there cosplay creations and per formative choices.

(Please be aware that practice will take place in the cosplay zone area)

Pre-Judging Drop in.

A second opportunity for those unable to make the workshop. Costumers will be able to drop in and visit the panel of judges before the masquerade to show off any additional elements they wish to present.

(Please be aware that if this is popular we will be allotting times for this event which will be emailed to you towards the event.)

Details of both of these will be sent to you with a request if you would like to pariticpate alongside our traditional information. If you are signing up at the event you will still be able to take part and we will give you details on the day.

Finally the judges will complete the walk just before the competition to inspect and check entrants just before the competition is due to start. (For those worried about this element don’t be, we have done this at competitions for years and all our judges are lovely!)



DON’T FORGET to place the EVENT NAME and DAY PARTICIPATING in the email subject.

Please remember if you are in any doubt or even just worried about entering then check with us, we’re all happy to help you through this and we understand rules, while essential, can sometimes be a bit daunting!

Feel free to e-mail:


Convention & Masquerade day entering:

Email Address:
(Do you wish to be contacted in future with news from Costume and Play?) Y/N

Name/s: (if you’re a group enter all names):

Character Names:

Character Series:

(Please include any reference pictures and work in progress if available.)

How much of your costume have you Handmade/Altered yourself?

Information for the Judges;

(You will also have the opportunity to speak to the judges directly and present your costuming work to them.)

What are you particularly proud of that you have handmade?

Are there any costume techniques you would like to draw the judges attention to?

(such as particular stitching used or new materials used.)

How are you planning to bring your character to life on stage?

(such as voice, gestures and movement.)

Anything else you would like the judges to know?

(Please be as detailed as possible!)

Performance Information;

Performance details/microphone request:

(Prompts and anything else that you need for your performance such as chairs/table etc.)


(If you want music please submit MP3 or WAV file AND bring a copy of your track on USB/CD labeled with your name and contact number just in case.)  You may submit a direct youtube link in advance via email.)


General Masquerade Ruleset

General Rules;
  1. Your costume must be appropriate for a family friendly show and include enough body coverage to be worn in public.
  2. All entrants must have a spare copy of their masquerade music track on USB/CD. If you cannot provide music, generic music can be provided for you.
  3. All entrants are required to bring a spare copy of their portfolio on the day, if you are having issues printing this please notify us so we can make sure that the judges have your portfolio.
  4.  Under the grounds of fairness, we ask that if you have gained free entry to the show via a pass such as exhibitor, we ask that you purchase a ticket for the date of the championship masquerade. You may be asked to present this ticket for inspection at the cosplay desk.
  5. Costumes entered that were used in the Championship who also wish to enter the community masquerade may be put on a waiting list for the Community if we are getting full. We will let you know in the unlikely event this may happen and will give as much notice as possible should you get a space.
  6. Under the grounds of fairness, if you have placed within the championship please be aware that you will not be able to place top three a second time within the community masquerade.
  7. By entering the competition, you agree to be filmed and photographed during the event, all rights of this belong to the event organizers and/or Costume and Play.
  8. Costume and Play and any staff, venue or organiser reserves the right to decline or stop a skit/performance at any time for any reason.
  9. Costume and Play and any staff, venue or organiser reserves the right to change or revise these rulesets at any time.
  10. Use or performance of the following will be immediately stopped and you may be disqualified from the competition or convention floor:
  • Excessive/inappropriate language such as swearing.
  • Committing an act which is viewed as something which may potentially harm yourself or others.


The judge’s decisions are final once made.



  1. Any size group may enter the Masquerade. However, if eligible for a prize, this will be split evenly between participants.
  2. If the winner of the competition is a group, there will be one trophy only.

All cosplayers will receive photography and video performances provided by Insomnia     Gaming Festival. The time frame for these will vary. If we do not have your email address announcements will also be placed on our social media for receipt of these.

Props Ruleset

Props and Costume Rules

Weapons and props must be approved by security staff before being allowed into the convention. This may include checks which will be carried out by the cosplay team. Decisions made by the venue security and staff are final and these rules serve as a guide only.


The general rule is;

If you were hit with the prop, would it break before you do?’

If your answer is ‘no’ then it means that someone could get hurt were this to happen. In which case, we would recommend you leave it at home just so you are not disappointed.


When outside of the convention hall, please make sure you have a safe way to transport your props and that they are sufficiently covered. Take extra precaution when travelling through high traffic areas such as the airport and railway stations, so as not to cause alarm or issue to others.

  1. Live weapons (deactivated guns, Airsoft, metal knives, swords, axes, live bows or slingshots, bokken, hanbo) are expressly prohibited, whether sheathed or piece bonded.
  2. No pyrotechnics, gas canisters, explosives (including cap-guns) or incendiary items.
  3. No weapons that can fire any sort of projectile, including foam darts or water. Unless it can be shown to be empty, with a visible brightly coloured safety tip and/or that only some parts have been used for the prop.
  4. No sharp points, protruding points or sharp edges, make sure they’re sanded, rounded, padded, covered or otherwise protected adequately.
  5. Props made out of wood cannot be too heavy, large or unwieldy (I.e blocks corridors/doorways or is likely to hit, hurt or inconvenience      others.)
  6. You cannot perform any action which may lead event staff, attendees or members of the general public to believe you are in possession of a real live weapon.
  7. In all cases, the weapon or prop must be no longer than 1.6 m (5’2”).
  8. Large elements, such as wings, exceeding over two meters, must be collapsed when on the convention floor. (Please contact us to check if you are worried about your costume dimensions at

No exceptions will be made regardless of any special licences, training or memberships!


Please be aware that that these rules are here to ensure we have a safe event for both staff and attendees. If you have been asked to put your prop away, please do so. In an extreme case you may be escorted from the event.


If there is any doubt, please send photos and a description of the prop to