ENERGETIC performers have taken to the stage in Finland to show off their guitar shredding* techniques at the annual Air Guitar World Championships.
American air guitarist Matt “Airistotle” Burns defended his champion title from last year, with a rendition of Gloria Gaynor’s anthem* I Will Survive and a top score of 35.4.
The American, who is also a four-time US champion, beat Australia’s Alexander “The Jinja Assassin” Roberts and Germany’s Patrick “Ehrwulf” Culek, who came joint second on 34.6 points.
Fifteen finalists from 11 countries including Pakistan, Taiwan, Britain and South Korea took part in this year’s competition.
Some performers chose to wear creative costumes, while others relied on their moves and attitude.
They each performed a one-minute pretend guitar playing piece and were then awarded points by a panel of judges.
Despite freezing cold weather, the performances were “steaming,” according to the organisers.
The championships have been held in Oulu, central Finland, since 1996 as part of a larger festival with the motto, “Make Air Not War.”
guitar shredding: playing quickly in a lead role
anthem: uplifting song
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Activity 1. Guitar heroes
After reading the article about the air guitar competition, answer the following questions in as much detail as possible.
• Where are the air guitar championships held?
• How long have the championships been taking place?
• Who won this year’s competition?
• Why do you think all the contestants have nicknames?
• What nickname would you choose for yourself if participating in the air guitar championships?
• What does the competition involve?
• Do you think an air guitar championship is a good idea?
Give yourself and three class mates a nickname for entering the air guitar championships and choose a song you’d like to perform to.
Perform your song playing the air guitar in a group of four.
Time: allow 20 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum links: English
Activity 2. Make Air Not War
“Make Air Not War” is the motto of the festival where the air guitar championships have taken place since 1996.
Work with a partner and creatively think up at least five other activities or competitions to do with the motto “Make Air Not War”.
Design an advertisement for the festival including your new activities.
Organise and coordinate an air guitar championship for students in your school.
You will need approval from your teacher and principal.
Find a suitable place to hold it, gather a panel of judges and advertise competition to students.
Time: allow 40 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum links: Critical and Creative Thinking, Personal and Social, English
(Vocabulary, Connectives, Openers, Punctuation)
The people in this competition relied on their performance to enhance the experience, not the music playing itself.
It’s the same as using words to create an image when you can’t use a picture.
Your challenge is to write a description or commentary of Matt Burn’s performance for everyone that could not be there in person or see a video of his act.
Focus on your descriptive and engaging language.
Write a list of 10 WOW words to describe Matt Burn.
Time: allow 15 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum links: English, Big Write, VCOP
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