Air Guitarists Compete For Fame And Glory At World Championships They (air) plucked, (air) riffed and head banged at The Air Guitar World Championships in Finland on Friday. Nothing would ever be the same again.
NPR logo Air Guitarists Compete For Fame And Glory At World Championships

Air Guitarists Compete For Fame And Glory At World Championships

Nanami Nagura of Japan won first place in the Air Guitar World Championships in Finland on Friday — with her "surprising Cinderella-themed performance." Eeva Riihela/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Eeva Riihela/AFP/Getty Images

Nanami Nagura of Japan won first place in the Air Guitar World Championships in Finland on Friday — with her "surprising Cinderella-themed performance."

Eeva Riihela/AFP/Getty Images

You couldn't exactly call them high strung.

On Friday, 15 contestants from North America, Europe, Asia and Australia brought their A game to a rainy stage in Oulu, Finland for the Air Guitar World Championships.

Each contestant performed part of a song of his or her choosing, then had to improvise to "Hopeless Case Of A Kid In Denial" by the Swedish rock band The Hellacopters.

Alexander Roberts, aka "The Jinja Assassin" apparently for his mane of red hair, came out in a studded denim vest, riffing and falling to his knees as the crowd cheered.

Vincent "Lord Scrat" Roussel of France wore cheetah print leggings with knee pads, a tie and a crown. He let some balloons loose, blew the crowd kisses and plucked the air to "Maniac."

But it was all over when Japan's Nanami Nagura, the 2014 champion, transformed from a Cinderella-type character to a raging, head-banging star.

She took home first prize and will get a spot in next year's World Final. She also received an actual guitar – a hand-carved Flying Finn electric guitar.

Air Guitar World Championships YouTube

Andrew Finn, from the United States. EEVA RIIHELA/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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EEVA RIIHELA/AFP/Getty Images

Andrew Finn, from the United States.

EEVA RIIHELA/AFP/Getty Images

German air guitarist Patrick Culek. Eeva Riihela/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Eeva Riihela/AFP/Getty Images

German air guitarist Patrick Culek.

Eeva Riihela/AFP/Getty Images