19-Year-Old Nanami Nagura Wins Air Guitar World Championships

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First thing is, yes: there is an Air Guitar World Championships (it is now in its 19th year, actually). And at this event, held in Oulu, Finland, the prestigious honor of “World’s Best Air Guitarist” has gone to none other than Nanami “Seven Seas” Nagura.

The 19-year-old Tokyo native wowed the crowds at the Finnish competition as she made her way through both rounds of the competition, claiming the World Title among a field of 16. Winners were judged by a jury of their air guitar peers on such criteria as technical merit, stage presence, technical merit, artistic impression, and “airness.” Nagura has plenty of experience on the six-strings, both real and imaginary—she used to be the member of an all-girl idol group made up of guitarists—and it showed, as she beat out US champ Matt “Airistotle” Burns and defending World Champion Eric “Mean” Melin. Fellow countryman Keisuke “The Ninja” Nagatsuka came in 4th.

You can see “Seven Seas” rocking out in the compulsories and the final event here:

It has been a long drought at the music miming event for the Land of the Rising Sun: Japan hasn’t taken home the air trophy since 2007, when comedian Yosuke Ochi won his second consecutive title. You can check out his thrilling take on Extreme’s “Play with Me,” sporting what has to be the coolest Hello Kitty chest plate we’ve ever seen:

—Alec Jordan

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