The “air apparents”: meet Portland’s Kara Picante

Stage Name: Kara Picante
Real Name: Kara Muir
City: Portland, OR
Competing: June 16th at Dante’s in Portland, OR

As her name suggests, to call Kara Picante a fiery presence is quite an understatement. In her 8 years as a competitive air guitarist, she’s built a reputation for both onstage intensity and offstage commitment to improving the US Air Guitar community. 

She sat down with USAG as Kara Muir to chat life within air guitar, outside air guitar, and how it all it constantly overlaps. How did her love of this absurd pastime help her connect with strangers, build up confidence, and why is she taking a (small) step back from it?

“This year I am taking a break from organizing anything but myself,” Muir says. “I am striving to be healthy so I can enjoy my life with my husband and my four (yes four) dogs. I just want to be silly, laugh a lot, travel, sing, dance, have some adventures and do good work with my massage clients.”


That’s not to say Muir has stepped out of the fire entirely – she plans to compete at Dante’s in Portland this June. “I never had permission to come out and play until I discovered this art/sport,” she says. “I didn’t have to be particularly talented and I could let out this ridiculous yet fun monster and pretend to be a rock star." 

Kara also loves engaging with the trolls and haters that seem to feel threatened by the rise of our sport. Her openness often wins them over.

“Air guitar gets people to open up in weird ways. Once you convince them that you realize what you do is silly and ridiculous, you can actually start connecting in a deeper way. I know that sounds weird, but everyone secretly enjoys either playing the air guitar or making fun of people who play air guitar, and within that, a mutual understanding can be found.”

Inspiring words from a USAG legend. See Kara Picante compete LIVE at Dante’s in Portland, OR on June 16th, 2018. And when the after party reaches the karaoke bar, she promises “Celine Dion and Bette Midler. You can bet on that.”

Kriston Rucker