Panel Applications are currently OPEN! Submit your panels HERE. Panel applications for Tekko 2018 will remain open until January 31, 2018.

Submit A Panel

Why should I submit a Panel for Tekko 2018?

Panels are an essential part of the programming for Tekko. They can be run by guests, staff, attendees, and experts. Guests may run panels on their recent works or even teach you a thing or two about how to break into the industry. Staff may give you some insight on what it is like to help run a convention and how you can volunteer yourself. Attendees help out by providing passionate panels and workshops on their favorite anime, manga, genre, hobby, etc. Experts can provide you with a deep dive into the intricacies of their areas of expertise. While just about anyone can run a panel or workshop on a wide variety of topics, we ask that the subject matter relate to Japanese Pop Culture or international fandoms that have impacted it. If you are unsure that your idea is right for Tekko, our Programming staff is more than happy to talk it through with you. Just send us an email at:

Reimbursement Policy

How it works…

Once again we will require all panelists to pre-register for the convention, but will offer on-site reimbursement based on the number of panels or workshops approved and performed. Once again, panelist will have a choice:

(OPTION 1) If you register only a Head Panelist with no Co-panelists, the Head Panelist will be entitled to a $20 reimbursement for each approved & completed panel up to the full cost of the badge that they purchased.

(OPTION 2) However, if you submit a panel application with (one) Co-panelist, the reimbursement will work the same as last year: For every approved panel completed, both the Head Panelist and (one) Co-panelist will be entitled to a $10 reimbursement up to the full cost of the badge(s) that they purchased.

For example, if you Pre-register for a General Admissions badge ($30) and perform one approved panel without the aid of a Co-panelist, you would be eligible for a $20 reimbursement. If you and a Co-panelist who both pre-registered for $30 badges wanted to offer 5 panels that were all approved, you would each receive a $30 reimbursement.

Additionally, several of our panelists have mentioned that more than monetary reimbursement, they would prefer some added perks or benefits for panelists at the show. While we haven’t nailed these down just yet, we will be discussing several options we might be able to offer this year.

Fine Print

No Show = No Reimbursement. If you have an approved panel that you fail to show up for, you will not be eligible for any reimbursement. So if you have 3 approved panels scheduled, and you complete 2 but don’t show up for the third, you will not receive partial compensation. Furthermore, you may no longer be eligible to provide content for future events. (Exceptions will be rare and at the joint discretion of the Programming Head & Convention Committee)

All of your scheduled content must be completed before you can receive your reimbursement at the show. We will inform accepted panelists closer to the time of the show where and when they will be able to receive reimbursement.

The Head Panelist and registered Co-panelist will both need to be present for the panels they are running or the missing party will not receive credit for it. Yes, we will be checking.

What about panels that are longer (or shorter) than 1 hour? Though most panels are generally 1 hour, this isn’t always the case as panelists strive to pace their information and balance quality with quantity. In some cases though, we may request panelists to adjust the length of a panel to be able to fit in our schedule. As such, we will be treating all panels equally for the purposes of reimbursement. (In the event of significant programming contributions, exceptions may be considered but will be at the joint discretion of the Programming Head & Convention Committee)

Featured Panels & Schedule

2018 Information Coming Soon!

Tekko Gakkou (School Series)

Tekko 2018 is proud to host Tekko Gakkou (School Series), an education oriented programming track dedicated to exploring the nuanced culture and history of Japan, for the third year in a row!

Content in the Gakkou track focuses on all facets of Japanese culture including (but not limited to) food, history, beliefs, school life, fashion, subculture, identity, and world influences.

This track will also host round table discussion forums for students of Japan to present, refine, and discuss material that is important to their pursuit of Japanese culture, academic or otherwise.

Content will be selected if it falls into the following categories and is of the highest possible quality:

  • Education and scholarship
  • Illuminations of Japanese Cultural Practice
  • Ways in which anime, games, and Japanese mass media shed light on Japan and her people.

Having your panel, discussion group, or workshop accepted for this track is a prestigious distinction and you will be recognized in various ways throughout Tekko 2018!

Past 2017 Panels

Be sure to check the schedule for all Gakkou Panels!

Exorcism: A Cross Cultural Comparison

Movies and media love to use exorcism as a storytelling device. But how much of what you see is accurate? How much does Christian exorcism differ from the work of the Onmyouji in Japan, or the Shaman of Korea? How has exorcism evolved in recent centuries? Join Charles and Father Mike as they explore and discuss the realities of exorcism and how media takes liberties with them.

Mononoke no Ghibli: The Spiritual and Sacred Realms of Studio Ghibli

Miyazaki was fond of saying he liked to build his worlds before his stories, and it shows. They have this mysterious and sacred aspects that often define them, and their characters. But how he creates them is an interesting blend of folklore and pop thought, among so many other things. This panel explores some of the ways in which mononoke- mystery- can be depicted and transformed through his works.

Urban Legends and Japan

Bathroom ghosts, slit-mouthed women, haunted train stations, insanity-inducing stories about bovine heads – little can top the terrifying and bizarre stories that are Japanese urban legends. Come and learn about some of the most popular ones (as well as some obscure ones), their non-Japanese counterparts, and their roles in media.

Learn to Sing Japanese Folk Songs

Folk song is woven into cultural identity all over the world, and Japan is no different in this respect. After a quick introduction to Japan’s folk song tradition, we will get right to the singing! “Sakura Sakura” and one other song will be taught during this panel.

The Japanese Cold: Illness and Disease in Anime

Ever watch an anime and wonder why the character is coughing up blood? Are there viruses that attack your heart? Well now you can find out! Come learn about various illnesses presented in anime. Taught by a real life medical student!

Go to Hell!: The Many Hells of Japan

Japan has many different ideas of hell. From the Shinto hell of Yomi to the many hells on Earth that call Japan home, join us for discussion on these hells, their locations, and their use in Japanese mythology.

Not Your Damsel!

Though cultural values differ, the interest in promoting feminism in both the Eastern and Western media has increased significantly in recent decades. Brought to you by the gal who evoked exploration in last year’s Kill la Patriarchy and the host of the premiere podcast Not Your Damsel, we’re going to smash the patriarchy one super girl at a time.

“Shall We Dance?”

How is European-crafted style of dance relevant to Japanese culture? And more importantly, how can one learn and apply the concepts of ballroom etiquette to a formal ball held by an anime convention? Recommended for anyone who loves dance or sports anime, this panel is part-lecture, part-interactive workshop.

How do I Tea?

Ever try to dive into drinking tea and then get instantly confused? Black, White, Oolong, Green, and Rooibos? With so many options, it’s easy to get confused. Here we will discuss the different type of teas, how to properly brew them, and will end with a Chinese Gongfu Tea Ceremony!

Moku-Hanga: Japanese Block Printing (18+)

Come take a trip to the Edo Period of Japan, where we will learn about Japanese block printing! Come ready to learn about the lesser known types of work, Moku-Hanga, and ready to carve some pieces of art!

International Horror: A Guide to English and Japanese Horror Series (18+)

Get your popcorn, grab your friends, and saddle up for these marathon-worthy horror series! We’ll have a chat about the differences in Japanese and English horror genres, while we’re at it!

Criminal Minds of Psycho-Pass (18+)

Take a journey with Moby White into the world of Psycho-Pass and learn about the minds of the criminals and the different techniques that real investigators would have used to stop these criminals!

Chibi Tekko

General Information

Continuing in 2018, Tekko presents Chibi Tekko – interactive panels and activities designed to entertain our younger attendees! Children under 12 are invited to learn about Japanese culture and anime through fun crafts, games, and much more. Days and times for Chibi Tekko activities can be found on the Tekko 2017 Guidebook. Chibi Tekko activities will be held in the Manga Library the best place to sit down and read some manga, chill or just hang out with your friends. Feel free to drop by or just relax and to read old or new manga. All manga was donated to the the Tekko library. If you have manga you don’t want any more please feel free to donate to help expand our collection.

Please note that all children under 12 years old must be accompanied by an adult at all times during the convention.


Notan Collage

Notan is the Japanese word for “light and dark”. We will use scissors and contrasting colors of paper to create a collage that plays with shapes as well as positive and negative space.

Painting The Great Wave of Kanagawa

The Great Wave is one of the most recognizable works of Japanese art. We will use crayons and watercolor paints to create our own version of this famous painting.

Crazy for Polka Dots (The Art of Yayoi Kusama)

Can you make art just out of dots? You sure can! Come make a fun polka dot project with us and also learn about how you can go visit one of Yayoi Kusama’s installation works right here in Pittsburgh.

Felt Sushi

It’s sushi that you can keep forever! Remember your most delicious sushi memories as we use felt to create sashimi and sushi rolls.

Teru Teru Bōzu Craft

If you’re trying to chase the rain clouds away, join us in making traditional Japanese teru teru bōzu dolls! These good weather charms became popular during the Edo period and are sure to brighten both your windows AND the skies. Younger children may require help with this craft.

What Life’s Like For a Child Living in Japan

Ever wonder what your life would be like if you lived in Japan? Come find out about a day in the life of a child living in Japan.

Japanese Folktale Storytime

Fortune bringing bees that come out of people’s noses? Ogres that eat baby belly buttons? These are just a few of the strange scenarios featured in Japanese folktales! Join our children’s librarian from Adams Memorial Library for this storytime including a variety of picture books that re-imagine classic Japanese legends.

Fuse that Pokémon?!

Like creating your own Pokémon? Stop by our family friendly workshop to participate in a game that invites attendees to combine two Pokémon, chosen at random, to create a new species. Small prizes will be given for our favorite drawings. Attendees of any drawing skill level are invited and encouraged.

Koinobori Craft

Something’s fishy about this traditional Japanese craft! Koinobori are carp kites or windsocks that Japanese families fly every Children’s Day on May 5th. Wild carp represent the family’s hope that their children will grow up to be strong. This craft is time consuming and younger children will require help.

Family Anime Games

Try your luck at some Japanese and anime board games, featuring your favorite characters.

Anime Headbands

Come make a headband to wear as you explore the convention.

Gotta Catch ‘Em All

Hunt down your favorite Pokemon in our live-action Pokemon Go!

Sponsors & Partners