Come meet some fantastic guests. Autographs with our amazing guests are always free at our events, although they may be limited to only the first few people or only an item per person, as we try to do our best to accommodate our guests.
Aurelio Voltaire is often described as a modern day renaissance man. He is a singer/ performer, creator of comic books, animation and toys.
An internationally touring musician, he is at the forefront of the Gothic, Steampunk and Dark Cabaret genres headlining some of the biggest horror, sci-fi and comic book conventions as well as Gothic and Steampunk festivals for nearly two decades. His music can best be described as a collection of murder ballads, tongue-in-cheek exercises in the macabre, with just enough bawdy songs about Star Trek and Star Wars to keep a convention audience rolling in the aisles. Many know him for his songs “Brains!” and “Land of the Dead” from the Cartoon Network show “The Grim Adventures of Billy And Mandy”. Voltaire’s live shows, whether solo or with his skeletal orchestra, are full of stories and games. Many describe his shows as sitting around a fire while an old friend regales you with tales, presuming that old friend drinks a liter of rum a night, dates zombie prostitutes and wrestles Krakens.
Voltaire has been recording and touring for over 20 years. He’s released 13 full length CDs. Most recently, Aurelio Voltaire can be seen in his informative and hilarious Youtube series, Gothic Homemaking. In this show, that can best be described as Pee Wee’s Playhouse for spooky kids, he demonstrates how to turn your boring apartment into a Gothic lair with the help of a desiccated co-host, Orville Deadenbacher and a bunch of other recurring monster characters.
Steam Powered Giraffe
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 SPG robots started street busking as these quirky characters back in January 2008 at Balboa Park, California, instantly drawing the attention of Southern California. They have since 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.
Their 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.
Raj Ramayya is an Indo-Canadian singer, composer and lyricist. His claim to anime fame would be his musical collaborations with famed Japanese composer Yoko Kanno as a member of The Seatbelts. Raj sang the opening credits song “Ask DNA” and wrote the lyrics for “Cosmic Dare (Pretty with a Pistol)” from the fan favourite feature film Cowboy Bebop: the Movie, and both sang and wrote the lyrics for “Strangers” from the anime series Wolf’s Rain. Not limited to music in anime, he has also worked on songs for video games from the likes of Konami, Sega, and Capcom.
Raj has been featured as a guest vocalist/composer with several distinguished artists, ranging from talented composers Yoko Kanno (Escaflowne, Cowboy Bebop, Wolf’s Rain) and Tatsuya Oe (Captain Funk, Hotei), to gifted lyricists Chris Mosdell (Eric Clapton, YMO) and Ron Sexsmith, and everyone in-between. His work has won him multiple awards and critical acclaim from around the world.
Among his other projects are the electronic Indian fusion music project “Bhang Lassi”, the alternative Indian-influenced folk rock band “The Beautiful Losers”, and session singing for products ranging from Asahi Beer and KFC, to Toyota and Coca-Cola. He is also a guest vocalist with three different Japanese electronic music groups; Captain Funk, Akakage, and Studio Apartment, with SA’s song “Strawberry Rainbow” (which Raj both sung and wrote lyrics for) hitting #1 on the iTunes Japan charts! Raj is excited to be making a triumphant return to Anime Midwest and can’t wait to perform for everyone for the second year! For more information, you can visit him online at http://www.rajramayya.com.
Samurai Dan and Jillian
The husband and wife team of Daniel and Jillian Coglan are full-time martial art instructors, specializing in 16th century Samurai Arts. When not teaching at their dojo, the Kojokan, they travel the United States performing and teaching the ancient ways of the most famous warriors in history.
With a combined 35 years of experience, their show is a unique blend of history, combative skill, and humor, designed to educate and entertain audiences both large and small.
Beyond their martial skills, the dynamic duo collaborated to write, direct, host, and star in a 12 episode TV series entitled, “The Way of The Samurai.”
Daniel is also an author, with several martial art articles published, and is currently working on his second full-length novel.
The strongest idol unit ever has arrived! Consisting of 2 active pro-wrestlers, gym junkies and kawaii idols, DEADLIFT LOLITA is here to “redefine the meaning of kawaii.” Following his departure from idol trio LADYBABY August 2016, the amazing lolita-wearing wrestler Ladybeard continues his kawaiicore trend in the new idol group DEADLIFT LOLITA with the bodybuilder idol Reika Saiki. Ladybeard is the persona of a 33-year-old Australian wrestler who moved to China in 2006 to kick-start his martial arts stunt career in films, later becoming a hit in Hong Kong as a pro wrestler in unique outfits. In October 2013 he moved to Tokyo to take his career to the next level as part of an idol group LADYBABY, now known as The Idol Formerly Known as LADYBABY following his departure. This incredibly well-synced new weightlifting and music duo is set to perform several original songs at their live show in Chicago, and Ladybeard’s ‘Kawaiicore’ style screams will be complimented for the first time by his clean voice singing.
Greg Ayres has been blasting his way into 2019! He was thrilled to make his second appearance in the DragonBall universe in DragonBall Super as Frost, and equally excited blasting bugs as Geo in Sony Picture’s Starship Troopers : Traitor of Mars. Some other recent roles include Jiro in Concrete Revolutio, Sho Utsumi in SSSSGridman, Ryuuou Edogawa in Doreiku, Koji Koda in My Hero Academia, Yabase in the upcoming dub of Hitorijime My Hero, and even makes an appearance as Popuko in Pop Team Epic. He was also given the opportunity to reprise one of his favorite roles as Son Goku in Saiyuki Reload Blast. With over 290 credits to his name, he has managed to play a variety of characters that are almost as colorful as his hair. Some recent roles include Nagisa Haruki in Free, and Free Eternal Summer, MonoKuma in Danganronpa, Clear in Dramatical Murder, and Doug in Gangsta, Yu Nishinoya in Haikyu, Zenji Marui in Food Wars, Ganta Igarashi in Deadman Wonderland, Heihachi Hayashida in Samurai 7, and Kouichi Sakakibara in Another. Some of his all-time favorite roles include Son Goku in Saiyuki, Chrono in Chrono Crusade, Kaoru Hitachiin in Ouran High School Host Club, Youhei Sunohara in Clannad, Yuki in The Wallflower, Leo in Ghost Stories, Satoshi Hiwatari in DNAngel, Kaworu Nagisa in the Director’s Cut of Neon Genesis Evangelion, Tomoki Sakurai in Heaven’s Lost Property, and Negi Springfield in Negima.When he’s not in a booth with headphones on, you can usually find him sporting headphones behind “the decks” at many a music event. A veteran nightclub DJ of many years, he has jumped at the opportunity to play music and organize late night dances at many of the conventions he attends. Greg is also a member of Project BECK, who perform music from the anime Beck Mongolian Chop Squad, and has had a blast reliving the music from that show with his friends. Thrilled to be able to share his love of music with anyone willing to listen –from packed rooms at anime conventions, to the legendary stage ofThe Knitting Factory (NYC), he’s always ready to make a little noise.
Mega Ran personifies with Hip-Hop should be: Spontaneous, fun, and true. Every album, starting with “Mega Ran” in 2007, conveys a different theme, a different vibe, and a different emotion. “Mega Ran” was a collection of sampled 8-bit beats from the hit “Mega Man” video game series, which was quickly discovered by CAPCOM. Instead of shutting down this hit music, CAPCOM offered Mega Ran a special licensing agreement and booked him to perform at Comic-Con and other special events. Since then he’s released albums including “RANDOMONIUM” and “FOREVER FAMICON” and “Black Materia,” and has toured with acts such as mc chris and MC Lars, playing in the US, UK, and Japan. He’s appeared in Playstation: The Official Magazine and Game Informer. Fans can learn more about Ran and download free songs at his website, megaran.com
Margaret (Meg) McDonald is a Houston based actress and all around nerd. McDonald first got started after auditioning while she was still in school. After getting her BA in Drama at the University of St. Thomas, Meg pursued a full time acting career in the booth as well as onstage. Her most notable roles in anime are “Rikka Takanashi” in Love, Chunibyo, and Other Delusions, “Tamako Kitashrikawa” inTamako Market, “Miho Nishizumi” in Girls und Panzer, and “Isuzu” in Log Horizon. She can also has supporting roles in Watamote, Hakouki, Little Busters, Maria Holic, Mayo Chiki, Rozen Maiden: Zuruckenspulen, Maidsama, and Nobunaga the Fool to name a few. She also appears in Parasyte: The Maxim and Akame Ga Kill.This is her first appearance at Anime California and she couldn’t be happier.
Luci Michelle Christian is a voice actress and ADR script writer at Funimation and Seraphim Digital/Sentai Filmworks. She has provided voices for a number of English versions of Japanese anime series, and video games. Notable anime roles include Ochaco Uraraka in My Hero Academia, Reg in Made in Abyss, Touko in Bloom Into You, Honey in Ouran Host Club, Kaname in the Full Metal Panic! Series, Psiren and Wrath in Fullmetal Alchemist, Nami in One Piece, Kyuta in The Boy and the Beast, Lenalee in D. Grayman, Asuna in Negima, Alois in Black Butler, Tenma in School Rumble, Rico in Gunslinger Girl, Ophelia in Claymore, Makina in Shikabane Hime, Birdy in Birdy the Mighty: Decode, the Narrator in Kamisama Kiss, Hungary in Hetalia, and Medusa in Souleater, Trixie in Blade Runner: Black Out 2022, Cocona in Flip Flappers, Yuki in Food Wars, Chihaya in Chihayafuru, Carmen in Starship Troopers: Traitor of Mars, Hestia in DanMachi, Satomi Murano in Parasyte: The Maxim, Deunan in Appleseed, Elsie in the World God Only Knows, Kelly in Halo Legends, Mirai Onozawa in Tokyo Magnitude 8.0, Nagisa in Clannad, Ringo in Air Gear, Mako in Nerima Daikon Brothers, Milia Fallyna in Macross, Haruko in Air, Risa in D.N. Angel, Tetsu in Peace Maker Kurogane, Duck/Tutu in Princess Tutu, Jinpei in Gatchaman and Paiman in Gatchaman Crowds, Sasshi in Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi, and Yukari in Azumanga Daioh. You can also let her read you books on Audible! She @lucilovesmic on Twitter and can be found online at www.lucichristian.com.
Chuck Hubers most recent anime roles are Android 17, Emperor Pilaf and Kibito in Dragon Ball Super, Kurogiri in My Hero Academia, Jajuka in Escaflowne, Kuro in Servamp, Kuniharu in The Disastrous Life of Saiki K, Asanaga in Endride, Kyūta’s Father in The Boy and Beast, Tony Stark in Death Battle, and Jason the Toymaker in CreepyPasta. Chuck Huber started acting in Anime in DBZ. Since then he has voiced hundreds of characters including Hiei in YuYu Hakusho, Stein in Soul Eater, Kululu in Sgt. Frog, Mohji in One Piece, Shou Tucker in Full Metal Alchemist. He has been a writer on Hetalia, Sgt. Frog, Baccano, Spice and Wolf, Strike Witches, Dragonaut and Skip Beat!
Video games Chuck has contributed voices for include Borderlands II, Ghostbusters, The Walking Dead, Aeon Flux, DBZ, Smite, The Killing Floor… among others. As a filmmaker Chuck has acted, produced, written or directed for Arbor Day – The Musical currently on Amazon Prime, Prince Adventures, The Troubadoors, The Fragility of Seconds, The Mechanical Grave, Odd Man Out among others. He began acting in Chicago at the Goodman Theater, Court Theater, Steppenwolf Theater after graduating from DePaul University and continues to work on stages in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. He also plays Dr. McCoy in Star Trek Continues; Dean Hansen on Season 2 of American Crime on ABC and Detective Swinton in the The Harrowing.
D.C. Douglas hates third person biographies. But he loves conventions and meeting fans. So he wrote this. Video game fans know him as Albert Wesker in seven “Resident Evil” games — from 2007’s “Umbrella Chronicles” to 2016’s “Umbrella Corp” — a decade of badassery. Oh, and there’s Legion in “Mass Effect” 2 & 3, Kamoshida in “Persona 5,” Pod 042 in “Nier: Automata,” Azrael in “Blazeblue,” Gafka in “Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology,” Raven in “Tekken 6,” foxy grandpa Gunter in “Fire Emblem: Fates” and many more Japanese RPGs and indie American games (see DCDouglas.com/cons).
Anime fans may know him as X Drake in “One Piece,” Shoot McMahon in “Hunter x Hunter,” Locus in “Berserk,” The Professor in “Cyborg 009,” Jasley in “Mobile Suit Gundam: IBO” season 2, Vincent Pike in “MSGT: Bandit Flower,” Genji Kamogawa in “Hajime no ippo,” Shori Shibuya in “God, Save Our King!” and many more too obscure to list. Cartoon fans know him as Chase on “Transformers: Rescue Bots,” Colonel Rawls on the final season of “Regular Show,” Superman on “Family Guy,” Mick in “The Tom and Jerry Show,” Sylvas/Aikor in “The Monchichi Tribe” and a few pilots that died lonely and unseen.
FILM & TV: Pa Kettle in “Z Nation,” Bud in “Sharknado 2,” Zepht in “Star Trek: Enterprise,” Aiden Wexler in SyFy’s “Isle of the Dead,” and another 200+ appearances on random shows and weird films over the last 25 years. Check him out on IMDB and DCDouglas.com to spot more titles you know.
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 and the critically acclaimed OLD WOUNDS. His newest projects include the devil-comes-to-dine drama DINNER AT DANTE’S and the science fiction tale TERROR FIRMA. For more, check out www.facebook.com/russell.lissau
Ogawa Burukku is an American artist who in 2004 moved to Japan to study manga at the Nippon Designer Gakuin and work on her Japanese language abilities. After graduating with honors, she ended up staying in Japan to get work as an assistant manga artist and translator. Since then, she has worked with both Japanese and American studios and publishers as a manga artist, illustrator, storyboard artist, and translator, as well as occasionally lending her voice for narration and vocal jobs.
Up until September of 2012, Ogawa Burukku had worked on other properties or short projects (one-shots, or yomikiri), but FaLLEN was her first ongoing project, and she’s been working on it almost exclusively ever since. It started out as a webcomic but has since been published independently in paperback form, thanks to funding by readers through Kickstarter. The project is a dream project of hers that she has been developing since high school, with the idea that she wanted to create an alternative magical girls series featuring an atypical lead with elements that could appeal to both male and female readers. “It’s the series I wanted as a kid but never got to have… so I made it myself!”
Oscar Seung hails from Lausanne, Switzerland and is a Dallas-based actor, opera singer, violinist, pianist, and conductor. Oscar is proud to represent Asian-Americans in theater, film, voice overs, and national commercials. In an effort to combat misrepresentation and underrepresentation of Asian-Americans in the arts, he created/produced/ and stars in American Dynasty – it will hopefully be the first Asian-American drama on television. The project has been screened at over a dozen domestic/international film festivals and won Audience Favorite at the Houston Asian American Film Festival, Best Screenplay at the Largo Film Awards, Best Domestic Short nomination at the Fort Worth Indie Showcase, and Best Actor nomination for Oscar at the Ouchy Film Festival. Voice over credits include Yuri!!! on Ice (Seung-Gil Lee), Touken Ranbu: Hanamaru (Kasen Kanesada), Show By Rock!! (Oboro), All Out!! (Yutaka Shinshi), Shounen Maid (Ibuki), One Piece (Daruma), Prince of Stride: Alternative (Nanpei Aoba), Fairy Tail, The Heroic Legend of Arslan, Garo: Crimson Moon, SHIMONETA: A Boring World Where the Concept of Dirty Jokes Doesn’t Exist.