Ellen McLain, the voice of GLaDOS, the artificial intelligence antagonist in Portal (for which she won an AIAS Interactive Achievement Award for Outstanding Achievement in Character Performance) and Portal 2, hails from Nashville, Tennessee. She has worked in theater and opera for over thirty years. Her professional career began on Broadway with Rex Harrison in My Fair Lady and with the legendary Peggy Lee in her show, Peg. Ellen’s credits range from Linda Loman in Death of a Salesman to Mimi in La Boheme. McLain provides voices for many characters in several video games from Valve. Among them are the announcer in Team Fortress 2, and the voice of the Combine overwatch for the Half-Life 2 series.
McLain is the only person to have her voice in all the games in the Orange Box. She sang the ending credits song to Portal, "Still Alive" and Portal 2, "Want You Gone", both written by Jonathan Coulton, and sang the Turret Opera by Mike Morasky featured at the end of Portal 2.
McLain now lives in Seattle with her husband, fellow voice actor John Patrick Lowrie, who insisted she get a voice demo for years and is therefore responsible for her subsequent fame as the much loved and hated GLaDOS.
John Patrick Lowrie
John Patrick Lowrie was born in 1952 in Honolulu, Hawaii and raised in Boulder, Colorado. At 16 he left home to make his way as a singer/guitarist/flautist/trombonist in a rock ‘n’ roll band, sleeping in parks and communes and getting to know several hippies. Surviving the draft, he graduated with highest distinction from the Indiana University School of Music and for a few years managed to make a living as a composer and guitarist in his acoustic fusion duo The Kiethe Lowrie Duet, garnering critical acclaim and opening for people who were much more famous than he was. He then decided to become an actor because the pay was better and the work was steadier. To this day he remains the only person he knows of who has done this. He met Ellen McLain, his wife of twenty-four years, in Arnhem, Holland on a European tour of a Broadway show and started his acting career in Palermo, Italy telling jokes to an opera house full of Sicilians who didn’t speak English. Success continues to dog his heels like an angry Pekinese. John and his wife now reside in Seattle, where they divide their professional time between acting in live theater and voice acting for computer games and radio.
Doug Walker, from ThatGuyWithTheGlasses.com is best known for his character The Nostalgia Critic, who reviews bad movies and TV shows from childhood. He also plays the roles of That Guy With The Glasses, who answers the weirdest questions fans can come up with, Chester A. Bum, the hyper active bum who loves every movie ever made, and Dominic, a bar tender who has talked with the video game world's biggest stars. He's also noted for having a long standing "rivalry" with The Angry Video Game Nerd. His online shows averages one to two hundred thousand viewers a week. His fans include Roger Ebert, Paul Dini, and the creators of Animaniacs. He's appeared on PBS, Entrepreneur Magazine, New York Times, has worked with the stars of Mystery Science Theater 3000, and was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year at the 4th Annual Mashable Awards in 2010. Often his convention appearances end up turning into comedic videos featured on his site, so don't miss your chance to possibly be featured in one.
Todd provides voices for several of the most famous anime characters, including North Itality in Hetalia, Ling Yao in Fullmetal Alchemist, Natsu Dragneel in Fairy Tail, and Hikaru in Ouran High School Host Club, among many others. Todd Haberkorn is currently a proud member of the Anime community and continues to be its humble servant by way of english dubbing. Haberkorn received his BFA in acting from Southern Methodist University and continues to work professionally, primarily in Texas and surrounding states, as an actor, director, producer, and writer. And while the FUNimation Podcast is no more, you may have previously seen him star in it.
Catch Todd’s voice as lead roles in Sgt. Frog as Keroro, Suzuka as Yamato, Ghost Hunt as Naru, Claymore as Raki, Holic as Wataknuki, D. Gray Man as Allen Walker, Sands of Destruction as Kyrie, Soul Eater as Death the Kid, and some others he can’t say right now. A few supporting roles include Itsuki in Shuffle, Ichimoruken in Hell Girl, Firo in Baccano!, Kono in Darker Than Black, Hikaru in Ouran High School Host Club and Khoza in One Piece. Check out most of the shows listed above on Hulu.com or Funimation.com. When not in the booth, Todd is a producer with his company, Out of the Office Productions. Todd is represented by The Horne Agency.
Sonny Strait is a prolific voice actor who is best-known for rules such as Maes Hughes in Fullmetal Alchemist and Arsène Lupin III, in addition to Krillin in DBZ. Sonny is also known as an illustrator for one of the most famous, independently published comic book series Elfquest. Sonny Strait has over 20 years of experience in the arts.
Besides Krillin, Hughes, and Lupin, Sonny has worked on many popular animated characters including Usopp from One Piece and Cartoon Network’s laid back, robot host Toonami Tom. He has also worked as a writer and director on several TV series including Dragonball Z, Case Closed and Lupin the Third.
Spike Spencer has voiced hundreds of episodes of Anime including Evangelion, Bleach, Vampire Knight, Durarara!, Battle Angel, Suikoden, Orphen, Spriggan, Nadesico, Mar, PreTear, Buso Renkin, Gundam, Code Geass 2, and Kekkaishi. His video game credits include Bioshock:Infinite, Saints Row 3, World of Warcraft, Tales of Vesperia, BlazBlue, Dynasty and Samurai Warriors, Steambot Chronicles, Star Ocean 2, Lunar: Silver Star Harmony, and many others. Spike has also lent his voice to numerous radio and TV commercials.
He has also worked as an actor with stars such as Tommy Lee Jones, Sandra Bullock, Frank Langella, Tia Carrere, and Scott Glenn. Spike is also an author, including "How to Be A Frickin Genius Voice Actor, Step One," "What Happens At The Con, Stays At The Con?," And "Don't Kill Your Date (And Other Cooking Tips)"-(Coming soon). Spike is also a screenwriter with several projects in various stages. Spike is soon to begin production on his first feature film that he scripted, "Dwindle Down." Spike is also an avid sailor, cook, traveler, and enjoys a good bit of dancing from time to time.
Quinton Flynn provides the voice for some of the most iconic video game characters, including Axel from Kingdom Hearts and Raiden in Metal Gear Solid. Quinton’s voice has been burning up film and television as such characters like Axel in Kingdom Hearts, Reno in Final Fantasy: Advent Children, Raiden in MGS, and Iruka-sensei in Naruto ever since he first arrived in Los Angeles from his native Cleveland. He is an A-list voice actor, having played such famous animated characters as Jonny Quest, Spiderman, Speed Racer, The Human Torch, Timon, Snowbell in Stuart Little, among countless others. His television and film appearances include Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, King of Queens, Animaniacs, Woody Woodpecker, Robot Chicken, Digimon Data Squad, Blood+, and many more.
Lewis "Linkara" Lovhaug
Lewis "Linkara" Lovhaug has had the misfortune of being cursed to review comic books on the internet. Somehow this has made him popular on the website That Guy With the Glasses, though many suspect it’s more so people can stare and laugh at the weirdo. On his show, Atop the Fourth Wall, he regularly contends with the surreal, the stupid, and the senseless books that the comic industry has produced over the last eighty years. If that wasn’t sad enough, he also has done a retrospective on Power Rangers (released on the schedule of when a blue moon rises on the 13th hour of the 13th day of the 13th month), actually attempting to grant serious analysis to a series about guys in spandex punching rubber-suited monsters. It’s best not to make direct eye contact with him.
Many are the rumors that surround Brian Heinz aka the Last Angry Geek. Some say his first, and only, love is comic books and that he reviews them for the masses. Others say he's a huge Doctor Who fan and he sits on a couch of green reviewing the new episodes. Others still, say there is no Last Angry Geek, there is only Lord Stark, sworn member of the Nights Watch and reviewer of Game of Thrones. A guy down the street says he's pretty sure he saw the Geek dressed up as Cloak #1 shortly after the events of SUBURBAN KNIGHTS. Rifftrax wouldn't return our calls, but on their website the Geek appears with Rob and Doug Walker for the riff of Batman Returns. Finally, George Lucas once said he was sure the Geek did a pretty good Obi-Wan impression but died at the hands of the Executer during TO BOLDLY FLEE. Many rumors surround the Last Angry Geek, what is known, is that many Bothans died to bring you this profile.
Rachel Tietz is a stage and film actor who is very excited to be at her first anime convention. She is best know for her work on ThatGuyWithTheGlasses.com. Rachel got her start playing Rebecca Stoné (The accent is silent) on Doug and Rob Walker's series Demo Reel. She is now a permanent cast member of the hit show The Nostalgia Critic, as well as other projects soon to be released on the site. Rachel is also an acoustic singer/songwriter, and you can check out her original music on her budding YouTube channel. There you can also find her Rachel Rambles vlogs that serve as fan Q&As, as well as information about the site, upcoming projects, and more!
Malcolm Ray is an actor, on screen and as a voice over artist. His skills go beyond acting with professional training in film and video as his major at Columbia College Chicago. In the span of his Bachelor career at Columbia, Malcolm has successfully completed his Interdisciplinary Film Degree, been the casting director for a practicum film, interned at O'Connor Casting, and has begun a professional acting career. Malcolm effectively made use of his elective credits, taking courses in Columbia's Radio and Theatre Departments including; Voice Over, Voice Acting For Animation,Radio Production, Voice 1 and more. He is represented as talent at the Stewart Talent agency in Chicago. As a freelance actor, he is currently hired talent for the online production company "Channel Awesome", appearing long side Doug Walker in many episodes of "Nostalgia Critic."
Ick by Industrialkitty
Ick by Industrialkitty is a classic Lolita style clothing line independently manufactured in Chicago, IL. Ick offers a wide variety of sweet hand-made Lolita items to meet your tea-time needs! You can see and experience Ick's designs and styles at Anime Midwest's fashion show on Sunday morning.
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mossbadger is an independent clothing and textiles company, specializing in silk-screened and digitally printed designs. Their limited edition garments and accessories are influenced by symbology, folklore, history, and magic. You can see and experience mossbadger's designs and styles at Anime Midwest's fashion show on Sunday morning.
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Victorian Angel by Amy Marie Couture is an alternative line of clothing that is influenced by Japanese Lolita fashion using Victorian era elements. Amy Marie Couture fashion is designed by local Chicago designer Amy Fenderson. Amy has a bachelors of Fine Arts in Fashion Design from Columbia College Chicago. While still a student, her designs were chosen to show in Chicago Fashion Focus Week and has been recognized by the Driehaus Awards for Fashion Excellence. She has also been recognized by the Chicago Fashion Incubator as an Associate Designer since 2009. Amy's designs are influenced by classic styles from the 40's and 50's era of fashion with a contemporary twist. Victorian Angel is her most recent collection of designs that merge her love for vintage fashion and her passion for Japanese Lolita style in a beautiful new collection that appeals to every woman, Lolita or not.
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Paradise Rose Shop is a Japanese-style accessory brand that offers a variety of pieces for different genres of lolita fashion. It is where princesses come to find unique and colorful jewelry. Paradise Rose offers pieces such as the iconic cupcake jewelry with handsculpted roses and the handcrafted gothic leather crowns. The idea behind the workings of Paradise Rose is to provide lolitas with handmade, inexpensive jewelry and accessories that compliment the Lolita wardrobe and complete the outfit. Jewelry can be an excellent way to make a coordination's canvas become your very own masterpieces. Each piece is handmade by local Chicago artist Lina Rauchas, resulting in one-of-a-kind pieces that belong to you alone. As Paradise is a place where one can find happiness and bliss, Paradise Rose Shop hopes that you can find your own piece of paradise.
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Steam Powered Giraffe
Steam Powered Giraffe Performance FAQ
The robots of Steam Powered Giraffe are like nothing you've ever seen. The malfunctioning joke-spewing metal men play a collection of original Vaudeville inspired tunes fused with modern flare and executed in a super-sleek, one-of-a-kind performance. More than just a band, Steam Powered Giraffe is an experience that must be seen and heard by the entire family.
The artists behind the robots started street busking as these quirky characters in January 2008 at Balboa Park, California, and instantly drew the attention of Southern California. Since then they've performed at such venues as The San Diego Fair, The San Diego Zoo, The Wild Animal Park, Legoland, Ontario Mills, and numerous Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Steampunk Conventions.
The act combines the visual of robot pantomime with sketches, pop culture references, improvised comedic dialogue, and of course, original music. From their heartwarming nostalgic melodies to their funky cabaret rock, Steam Powered Giraffe's songs are memorable, infectious, and as unique as the robots themselves.
Dr. Awkward is a Nerdcore rapper with several hit songs and performances at Nerdapalooza and after parties at Comic Con, Florida's Nerd Invasion, and Texas' Comicpalooza. In 2009, Dr. Awkward released his first solo project "Next Gen," in which Doc proclaims that he is the future of Nerdcore Hip Hop. The EP was hailed as an instant classic, with hits like "Geekquilibrium" and "Imposter." Dr. Awkward release his latest album, "Unlimited" in April 2010, which features an amazing fusion of Nerdcore, Hip Hop, and R&B.
YTCracker is a rapper, former cracker, and Internet entrepreneur. YTCracker began producing rap music in 1998 in the genre that has since become known as nerdcore hip hop. YTCracker is a self-proclaimed “jack of all trades”, also making a name for himself as a professional disc jockey, computer programmer, graphics designer and webmaster.
The Pillowcases are the number one Pillows cover band in the world. For many, that's all we need to say. But if not, let me ask: do you like FLCL? Of course you do. And that means you like the band the Pillows, who made the soundtrack for that anime. The Pillowcases are on a mission to rock out every con in the country and spread the joy of the music of the Pillows to everyone. Along the way, you'll hear covers of some of nerd fandom's favorite songs just to mix things up a bit. So get your butts down to see the show, it's going to be awesome.
Listen on Youtube • Ohayocon Footage
V is for Villains (In Hiding)
According to the Chicago Post Times, rumors suggest that Mr. Agitator deliberately injured himself during a previous performance to buy time for a Villains squad to steal over nine hundred thousand dollars from allegedly corrupt law firm, Sterns and Hallman. Allegedly, the injury delayed police dispatch for exactly fourteen additional seconds, giving them enough time to escape without any concrete evidence. Rumors hinted that Sterns and Hallman were involved in numerous political embezzlement schemes. The Villains must ensure that any evidence against them is destroyed before appearing live again, and so they can not join us this year. We expect they will return on the scene within a year.
By day, Russell Lissau is a mild-mannered newspaper reporter in suburban Chicago. By night, he battles evil writing comic books including THE BATMAN STRIKES!, THE 29 and SHREK. He broke into comics in 2005 with the lead story in BATMAN ALLIES SECRET FILES AND ORIGINS. (A lifelong Batman fan who dressed up as the Caped Crusader as a child, he can't believe his luck.) Never one to shy away from a crowd, Lissau also leads workshops at libraries throughout the Chicago area about writing comics.
Alan Evans is the creator and artist of the #1 wrestling webcomic, Rival Angels. Rival Angels began in 2007 and has become a hit with critics, fans and professionals having been nominated for such awards as Best Comic, Best Long Form and Best Character. In addition, he's done spot illustration work for several wrestling companies and flatting work for The Dreamer, DC, Hi-Fi Color Design, Digital Webbing and many other independent studios. He loves drawing backgrounds, likes riding his bike and is also a fan of characters with the name, "Alan." Visit Alan online to check out his latest work, including Rival Angels at RivalAngels.com.
Trevor Mueller works at an advertising agency by day and writes comics by night. He is the writer/artist/creator of several popular webcomic series including the fantasy epic THE TEMPLE OF A THOUSAND TEARS and the teen-rated gag strip @$$HOLE!, both of which are self-published and have been nominated for several web comic awards. In addition to self-published web comics, Trevor has also written and self-published several other works including the all-ages stories ALBERT THE ALIEN and JUNKYARD CHASE. His web comic work can be found on his website, www.trevoramueller.com, along with his near-daily updates of movie, video game, and comic reviews. Trevor resides in the city of Chicago, with his cat Waffles.
Two-time Harvey-nominated writer of comics: Amala's Blade for DARK HORSE PRESENTS, soon to be a miniseries in 2013, One Giant Step for READING WITH PICTURES, Bizarro for SUPERMAN 80-PAGE GIANT and Captain Marvel for DC HOLIDAY SPECIAL.
KrazyKrow is a webcomic veteran with over 12 years of writing experience. His first comic, Krakow, was originally published in the University of Calgary student newspaper before leaping onto the web. His current comic, Spinnerette, is his first foray into the world of superheroes! Check him out online at www.spinnyverse.com!
Sleeping Samurai travels across the land with its supply of weapons, seeking out brave souls to test themselves in battle. They offer instruction, history, and fight choreography in addition to the thrill of combat. Whether you prefer the forms of the Crusader or the Samurai, only one can win the grand prize. Sleeping Samurai is a supplier and creator of hand made foam weapons, made to simulate actual weapons with as much historical accuracy as possible.
Long ago a young, or perhaps freshly painted, airship christened the Brazen Beauty set off her first journey from the far-away city of Tennesbury. After years of adventures too far-fetched to repeat, she found herself and her crew lost in a much stranger land... this one. Now renamed Airship O'Reilly, she and her crew come to Anime Midwest to... well... probably steal something.
Started back in 2007 as the Brazen Beauty, the Champaign, IL based Airship O'Reilly has since evolved beyond just a group of kids who wanted to make movies and have fun. Bringing together several slightly insane individuals, O'Reilly has become a force of entertainment, hosting events in their hometown, making costumes and accessories, and bringing the madness and chaos with them wherever they go.
FanService Renji began his creative journey in Jr. High where he excelled in writing and had a passion for music. After spending his free time writing and recording on a homemade setup built on old stereo equipment from friends and family, Renji pursued his dream career in audio and entertainment Renji attending and graduating from Full Sail University with a degree in Recording Arts. After a short stay for college in Orlando, FL he returned home back to Michigan.
After returning home he co-founded an independent record label, Northern Exposure Records (NER), to create a local entertainment scene in a market that was labeled hopeless. With NER by his side Renji expanded his resume to include recording engineer, event producer, promoter and artist manager. Being a nerd at heart, Cosplay quickly became a new love in his life. Not wanting to live in two separate worlds, Renji shifted his entertainment focus on the the Anime/Otaku world. Now he is a performer at various anime conventions across the U.S. You can catch him live singing his original brand hip hop, dancing on stage at the rave as one of the official dancers or rocking out in one of his music videos on youtube.
Listen on Youtube • Drift Away • Watch Me Rock This Cosplay • Level Up - or Facebook
Samurai Dan & Lady Jillian
Samurai Dan and his wife, the beautiful Lady Jillian (also attending), are full-time martial arts instructors, specializing in 16th century Samurai arts. When not teaching at their dojo, the Kojokan, they travel across the country performing and teaching the ancient ways of the most famous warriors in history. Their shows and demonstrations uniquely blend history, combative skill, and humor, in a way that will both educate and entertain audiences both large and small. The dynamic duo also collaborated to write, direct, host, and star in a 12 episode TV series entitled "The Way of the Samurai," and Daniel is also an author with several martial arts articles published, and he is currently working on his second full-length novel.
Rob "Vash" Lewis
Rob "Vash" Lewis is a well known costumer and con entertainer across the Midwest. Since first attending Sugoicon in 2005, Rob has been dedicating his time and effort to bringing Master class costumes and well loved entertainment to the many conventions he attends. Not only is Rob dedicated to providing quality entertainment to the attendees of the conventions he frequents, but he also teaches survival skills on his favorite genre – zombies. As a laboratory professional, Rob gives insight to the pathological side of the undead, educating the masses for the future. Rob currently resides in Omaha, Nebraska with his girlfriend and two pesky cats.
Midwest Karaoke Madness
Midwest Karaoke Madness is an eclectic group of veteran con-goers that noticed a distinct lack of revelry at conventions. These plucky young people decided that it was their calling, nay, their duty to amuse and entertain their fellow attendees. So, that’s exactly what they do...with the power of music!
This troupe has delighted the masses at many conventions, such as Anime Central and Anime Milwaukee. They bring as much music as their binders can contain (somewhere around 10,000 songs) ranging from Anime and Disney to 80’s Pop and Party Rock.