Otakon Matsuri Cultural Celebration

We are pleased to announce that the Otakon Matsuri will be running as a cultural track all weekend long.


What's that you say?  Tracks at Otakon?  Yep!.  With the transition to Washington D.C. we figured it was time for something new.  To that end, we are working on a bunch of cultural entertainment that we will offer throughout the weekend in addition to the musical acts you've come to expect from the Thursday Otakon Matsuri.

Here are some of the things we have in store:

  • Concerts
  • Martial Arts Demonstrations
  • Cultural Performances
  • Panels

Keep an eye on this space as we will begin announcing things very shortly.  We can't wait to see you there!

Please note:

The Otakon Matsuri is not the same as the Anisong World Matsuri. Anisong World Matsuri is a separate event at Otakon.  Click here to find out more information.


Yukata Contest

It is that time of year again!

In Japan, summer brings festivals and Bon Odori - but what Japanese summer is complete without donning a Yukata?

We at Otakon Matsuri are proud to once again bring you the Yukata Contest!  In our own Japanese Festival, we have a tradition of celebrating Japanese tradition with a contest that combines accuracy, personal flair, and presentation.  

Take a look at the rules below and bring your friends, family, and dress your best in your favorite, stylish, or unique Yukata and enjoy the Otakon Matsuri with us!  Show off your outfit, win prizes, and come enjoy the Matsuri with us!

Click below to see how to enter and some amazing entries from previous years.

How to Enter



Otakon Matsuri Guest: Stella ChuPhoto credit: Martin Wong

Stella Chuu

Stella Chuu is a cosplayer from Los Angeles and New York. She makes brilliantly detailed costumes, travels to conventions around the world, and works to promote geek culture. She loves to share the joy of DIY costume construction. Most notable are her Devil Homura, Imp Mercy, and Tharja cosplays. Her creative and quirky personality has led her to be featured on Kotaku, Nerdist, Mashable, Tech Insider and more. 

See more of her on 
Youtube @ https://www.youtube.com/user/StellaChuu
Patreon @ https://www.patreon.com/stellachuu
Twitch @ https://www.twitch.tv/stellachuu
Instagram @ https://www.instagram.com/stellachuuuuu/



DC Gurly Show

The DC Gurly Show is the Capital’s oldest queer burlesque troupe, and the preeminent burlesque training troupe for the DC Metro area. Operating for over 12 years, The Gurly Show has recruited and trained performers from all walks of life, with all kinds of backgrounds, bodies, colors, genders, and sexualities. Our Gurlies have gone on to incredible success with countless producers all across the US, and around the world! Our colorful past can only be outdone by our colorful future as we move forward with new performers, new venues, and new frontiers! Catch The DC Gurly Show every first Friday at the Bier Baron Tavern for their monthly Fundraise The Roof events benefitting local charities, as well as every fourth Thursday at the Pinch and every third Sunday at Freddie’s Beach Bar in Arlington! But be sure not to miss them at Otakon Matsuri on August 12!

Photo credit: Maze Studios

DCGS Logo Large - Copy.jpg


D.C. Gurly Show's performance will be featuring Stella Chuu! Make sure you come out Saturday night and catch the event! 



Taiko Drums

Chin Daiko has been teaching and demonstrating Okinawa Eisa since 2010. Eisa is a combination between Karate, dance, and Taiko. We have performed for the Japanese Ambassador, DC Mayor, other dignitaries, and different organizations from as far north as New Jersey to as far south as Virginia Beach. We believe and teach our members and audience in “Peace through understanding each other’s culture.” 



D.C. Judo 

Gentle and Not So Gentle Arts: Martial Art, Combat Sports and Japanese Culture:

Japan loves martial sports and its most popular is judo! This combination history lesson and demonstration will show the history of modern Japanese combat sports and many of the techniques used in them, from medieval samurai grappling arts to MMA filtered through the lens of Attack On Titan.



Morning, Noon, and Night Japanese Tea Ceremony

Come out and see how Japanese Tea Ceremonies are and how they differ at various times of the day. Enjoy the tea and snacks that go with each ceremony. See the diverse selection of tea and snacks that are enjoyed in this traditional and enjoyable event.


Capital Area Budokai

Capital Area Budokai will be joining us this year for Otakon 2017! The Budokai is dedicated to the proliferation of Japanese Budo and Martial Ways. They are students of Kendo, Atarashii Naginata, Kyudo, Shindo Muso Ryu Jodo, Nakamura Ryu Battodo, Toyama Ryu Iaido, and Mugai Ryu Iaihyodo . They will have live demonstrations Friday from 5-7PM and Saturday from noon to 2PM in the Marriott.

Live demonstrations will include the following:

  • Nakamura Ryu Battodo: Standing sword drawing, Kenjutsu, and live sword cutting
  • Mugai Ryu Iaihyodo: Old style sword drawing from seated and standing positions, as well as two person forms
  • Shindo Muso Ryu Jodo: Two person forms with walking stick, cane, sword, truncheon (Jutte), and sickle and chain (Kusarigama)


Musical Performances

Project BECK

Project BECK, a tribute band for the anime series "BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad," will perform at this year's Matsuri, to be held during Otakon 2017. The band combines the talents of six friends, including voice actor Greg Ayres.

Project BECK came together thanks to a shared love of "BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad," an anime series featuring a group of teenagers who form a band called BECK. Among the show's fans were the American pop punk band The Cheyenne Line, YouTube musician Kid Yuki, a.k.a. Cody Carsella, and long-time friend and bassist Houston. After years of traveling from state to state attending conventions as fans, Sam Biggs and Peri Arreguin of The Cheyenne Line decided to combine their talents with Cody and Houston. With the help of voice actor Greg Ayres and nerdcore rapper Doctor Awkward, they formed Project BECK to perform their favorite songs from "BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad." Originally formed for a single performance, Project BECK were thrilled to discover so many others wanted to share in the experience, as well.

Join Sam, Greg, Doc, Peri, Houston, and Cody for their Otakon Matsuri performance, which promises to be full of loud rock music, adrenaline, and celebration of an anime that was made to -- like one of the show's songs -- "Hit in The U.S.A."

The Slants

Portland’s The Slants are the first and only all-Asian American dance rock band in the world. They offer up catchy dance beats, strong hooks, and a bombastic live show that is “not to be missed” (The Westword). The Willamette Week says “While the band may well be best experienced live, Slants releases always promise a few blistering, note-perfect singles.” The music is the perfect combination of 80’s driven synth pop with hard-hitting indie, floor-filling beats which fans affectionately dub as “Chinatown Dance Rock.”

In addition to the music, the band is actively involved with helping marginalized communities, leading discussions on race and identity, and raising awareness of social justice issues.

They’ve been featured on Conan O’Brien’s Team Coco, BBC, NPR, NBC, IFC TV, Huffington Post, MTV, TEDx, and over 1,500 radio stations, tv shows, magazines, and websites across 82 countries.

20 international tours, including appearances in 48 of 50 U.S states, have led to headlining showcases at major festivals such as SXSW, MusicfestNW, San Diego Comic-Con, and Dragon Con.

The band has also provided support for The Decemberists, Mindless Self Indulgence, Girl Talk, Apl.De.Ap (of Black Eyed Peas), Blindpilot and Shonen Knife. In 2011, The Slants worked with the Department of Defense for a series of shows at U.S and NATO bases in Eastern Europe, dubbed “Operation Gratitude.”

Every one of their last 9 music videos have gone viral, gaining tens of thousands of views within days. Their single, “You Make Me Alive” has nearly 350,000 views.

Two recent music videos feature martial arts choreography by Sammo Hung (The Matrix, Ip Man, & Enter the Dragon) and feature international stars Daniel Wu and Shu Qi.

They’ve won “Album of the Year” and “Editor’s Choice” from dozens of magazines, including Willamette Week, LA Weekly, Shojo Beat, Village Voice, City Beat, and Rockwired.

Whether rocking music halls, anime conventions, maximum-security prisons, colleges, or army bases, it’s clear that The Slants’ infectious brand of “so damn good” music will leave you wanting more” (MRU Magazine).