MANILA, Philippines – Who can pull off planning a big birthday bash for over 1.05 million fans on Facebook and 100,000 followers on Twitter in barely a month? Cosplayer Alodia Gosiengfiao can.
It was only in late February when the opportunity to materialize the fantasy world of “costume play” or “cosplay” for short into a birthday shebang presented itself.
And Alodia, being the passionate and dedicated person that she is, didn’t hesitate to grab it.
Even in the face of time pressure she still manages to balance other commitments, such as preparing for her role in the Kimmy Dora movie sequel and making her much anticipated birthday costume.
So, what’s her driving factor?
“I just thought of how it would be amazing to have a party with fellow enthusiasts who have the same hobbies,” she said.
Growing up, moving forward
As she celebrates her 24th birthday Alodia said, “Aging has only reminded me of how much the cosplay and gaming community has grown over the years.”
Since 2003 Alodia has not only been part of the cosplay industry but she helped shape it. In the last 9 years fans and fellow cosplayers in the Philippines and in other Asian countries like Singapore, Indonesia, and Hong Kong have enjoyed watching her grow up.
“I think a big part of their adulation is they have seen her grow into the international celebrity she is now,” said Ren Cayetano about why he thinks everyone loves her. Cayetano is one of Alodia’s close friends and one of the event organizers.
While Alodia is undoubtedly an attention-grabbing young lady, it’s her dedication in perfecting her craft that makes her seem more stunning. Underneath the costumes and makeup her fans see the overflowing sense of sincerity.
But age won’t be a factor for Alodia’s future. She knows that she’ll have to adjust. “I think at my age it would be a bit hard to cosplay 12-year-old female characters,” she said.
No time to party crash
Unlike her celebration last year, which was also a public event dedicated to cosplaying, it’s the first time Alodia is planning her own event instead of being invited to one as a guest or a judge.
From conceptualizing the activities, to writing the materials for public relations to meeting with the partners, Alodia was involved in almost every step of the planning process.
Although lack of time was always her potential party-crasher Alodia doesn’t mind. “I lack sleep but it’s all right. I’m having fun doing all these,” she said.
“Alodia’s very hands on,” said Ren. Aside from the planning itself, as the guest of honor, she also has to prepare for her costume and performance.
In the past few days “she had to buy a new sewing machine in order to finish it on time,” he said, all while cording with the team as well.
Her birthday wish, your birthday gift
On March 31, Saturday, at the SM North Edsa Cyberzone, Alodia’s Birthday Bash will showcase her passions — namely cosplay, photography, and gaming.
Among other things, fans can expect a cosplay competition, array of performances by artists, cosplay gallery, gaming competitions, and the “Garden of the Gods Stage,” which has acrylic floor panels and a huge LED wall background.
While her costume is still a surprise, Alodia hints that “it’s from a popular video game and it’s predominantly red.”
But while this is Alodia’s event, the focus wont’ be on her. Part of her birthday wish is “to celebrate my passions with fellow artists, cosplayers, gamers and enthusiasts,” she said.
Because of all her passion and hard work, Ren said, “Hopefully, on Saturday, she would have a few seconds to block everything out and see their smiles.”
After 9 years in the industry, on Saturday, fans can give Alodia her birthday gift — a smile. – Rappler.com
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