Anime North Idol 2014

Once again, I was in charge of Canada’s biggest Jpop and anime singing competition: Anime North Idol.

The event was scheduled Saturday May 24th in the main event room of the International Plaza Hotel in Toronto, Canada.

This year’s Anime North was extremely successful and the Idol competition, very well received. Everything went super smoothly and the level of competition was very good.


It all started Friday at the Opening Ceremonies where Elisabeth Santos (Idol winner 2013) sung Inori You Raise me up (Romeo x Juliet). She delivered a very entertaining performance and it was a great way to kick off the convention!

The next morning, the group gathered at 9:00 am at the Windsor Room for the 2 hours of non-stop auditions. Working that morning were Irulanne, Tobi Moegan Malette, Kaytlynn Milligan, Andrew Kaidaj Scott, Elisabeth Santos, Kathryn FitzPatrick and Mark Nguyen. Jean-Philippe RedCavalier Méthot joined us shortly after to assist as well. We had over 40 auditions!!!

Our 7  finalists were Holly Higa, Christina Gyimesi, Suvi, Michael Lam, Shannon Bouchard, Weiwei Li and Joycelyn To.

After a 2 hour break, we all gathered at the Ballroom Plaza for a quick soundcheck and run through before the show.

Our celebrity judges this year were Idol Winner 2011 Michael Dapello, Idol Winner 2012 Michelle “Mielle Sanths” Nahmad as well as Extreme Anime Radio DJ Nef Canuck.

Once again, due to my exceptional skills, we were able to start the show on time ;)

This time around, I wanted to do something special to open the show. I managed to get all previous Idol winners to sing with me on a medley! Michelle sung BELIEVE (One Piece / Folder 5), Michael sung Sakura Mitsutsuki (Gintama / Spyair), Elisabeth sung Zero!! (Hataraku no Maou-sama / Minami Kuribayashi) and I sung Forever (Elemental Gelad / savage genius). It was great! :)

Then, our 7 finalists performed one after the other and all received very valuable critic and comments from our judges.

While the judges were deliberating to pick the new idol winner, last year Idol Elisabeth Santos performed again for the audience.

The level of talent of all the finalists was so good that the judges had a hard time picking up an ultimate winner. But they finally made their decision. I went on stage with my daughter Kara to present the flowers and the trophy to our new Idol Winner.

And… Anime North Idol 2014 winner is… Holly Higa!!!

Holly had charmed the judges with a very energetic and entertaining rendition of Ai Kotoba ii from Deco*27.

But it was not over yet!!! The next day, Holly was invited to performed at the Closing Ceremonies in front of several of the convention guests of honor and upper management staff of the convention.

Here’s the video montage of all the performances related to Anime North Idol 2014.

And so it ends.

I am officially retiring from the coordinator position of Anime North Idol.

After much thoughts, I decided it was time for me to move on and spend some time on myself. I have been in this position for 4 years and against all odds, I have created and turned this event into a very successful singing competition.

It doesn’t mean I will never be involved with AN Idol again (ex: as a judge or a guest performer) but I won’t be part of the executive team nor making any decision from now on. Whatever happens next, it is out of my control.

Thank you to everyone who helped out through out these 4 years and stood by my side without asking anything in return. I hope I was a good and trustworthy leader – I hope we all learned something in the process that made us better people.

I believe in the power of singing.