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Cosplay craze

By Xu Haoyu | China Daily | Updated: 2018-06-27 08:05

Chinese dancers Pipi-pingping, Yaorenmao and Huinan perform on stage at the second zhaiwu competition at Zhejiang University of Media and Communications in Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang province, on June 2.[Photo provided to China Daily]

Over 300 competitors took part in the contest.

"Yaorenmao nourishes my soul," says 19-year-old Wang Ze, who has watched the performer for three years.

"Feelings are very subjective. They can't be measured rationally."

Wang watched Yaorenmao with his previous girlfriend but says he wouldn't know what to do if a future girlfriend wanted him to quit.

Song Xiaoge, a participant in the Zhejiang university competition, says: "Yaorenmao was the first Chinese zhaiwu dancer I heard of. She's adorable and vigorous."

Song spends three to five hours making a video. She says Yaorenmao spends about eight.

Yaorenmao, based in Chengdu, Sichuan province, chanced upon the trend in 2011.

"It seemed simple," she recalls. "I was overjoyed."

Zhaiwu is still a subculture. But its members are passionate, says Luo Qiandan, marketing director of manhua.163.com, which co-sponsored the competition with a Huawei Technologies Co Ltd subsidiary.

Most contestants come from bigger cities and universities that have comics clubs, she says.

Over a million people signed up on the recent event's web page, more than twice as many as last year.

Another celebrity judge from Guangdong province, known by her online moniker, Pipi-pingping, shows how the genre can break boundaries.

She has danced to hip-hop since junior high.

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