Air guitarists compete for world title (and world peace) in Finland | Music | DW | 24.08.2018
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Air guitarists compete for world title (and world peace) in Finland

They master the art of surrendering to music without an instrument. The world's best air guitarists are competing in Finland — and they hope to change the world, too.

The elite among the international air guitar scene don't just gather each year in the Finnish city of Oulu to shake their long hair and jump around on stage, but also to strive for loftier humanitarian goals.

According to the ideology of the Air Guitar World Championships, as stated on the official website, "wars would end, climate change stop and all bad things disappear, if all the people in the world played the air guitar."

Contestants from six countries are gearing up for the final of the air guitar world championships on Friday, organizers said.

Contestants are judged on their ability to pretend to strum rock or heavy metal electric guitar solos — minus the instrument. Invisible acoustic guitars are also allowed.

The final features 15 contestants, including the American Matt Burns (top photo), who was crowned world champion at the 22nd edition of the annual event last year.

The US dominates the contest's line-up with six entries. Three other finalists are from Australia, while Germany and Japan have two each. Six female air guitarists are among the contenders.

Gold, silver and bronze medals are handed out at the grand finale on Friday night. The winner also receives the one thing he or she needs most: an actual guitar.

Click through the gallery below for other unusual world championships.

eg/rls (with dpa)

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