It's a day that fans have been waiting for a long, long time: After what feels like decades — centuries, even! — Pitch Perfect 2 is finally here. Understandably, through their excitement from having finally seen it in theaters (CENTURIES, I TELL YOU), fans have a few questions about the film. For example: "Why don't they make 50 more of these movies?" "How do I live my life as if I'm as much of a badass as Fat Amy is?" "Is the A Cappella World Festival a real thing?" Well, it's sort of partially your lucky day: I may not have answers to the former two questions, but I do have an answer to the latter question concerning whether or not the A Cappella World Festival is real.
I mean, as a Pitch Perfect fan, the idea of a real life counterpart to this major fixture in the film is sort of a dream, isn't it? Like, so much of a dream that I'm going to need to check out the IRL versions of Anna Kendrick and Rebel Wilson RIGHT AWAY. (And either see if they'll adopt me into their ranks to teach me of their talent, or at least give me enough tips to weasel my way on set for Pitch Perfect 3.) (Oh God, please let there be a Pitch Perfect 3 .)
OK, OK; let me calm down, because I'm getting ahead of myself. I've just been eagerly anticipating the release of this movie for so long! Before we get into the specifics about the A Cappella World Festival, however, let's quickly run down it's role in the film. Basically, in Pitch Perfect 2, the Barden Bellas have to work to redeem themselves as a group after their performance at NYC's Lincoln Center goes spectacularly wrong (and I mean spectacularly). The way they have to redeem themselves, though? By performing at the A Cappella World Festival, and winning — a feat that no American team has ever pulled off before. And if they lose? They would be forced to disband. Not so aca-awesome.
But, outside of the Pitch Perfect 2 universe, is the A Cappella World Festival real?
Unfortunately, the answer isn't as simple as the question itself. Though it's not an insane question when you think about it (real life collegiate a cappella groups have featured in the films, after all) the answer is technically yes and no. There's no competition with that exact name in existence, which makes sense because if there was, I'm sure it'd be packed to the brim with Pitch Perfect fans on a yearly basis from now on. However, fret not: For those of you still jonesing to follow some IRL A Cappella drama, there is a very similar event called the International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella, or ICCA. It's a competition open to a cappella groups worldwide, and each year it attracts hundreds of college teams vying for the top prize. Fun fact: Unlike the A Cappella World Festival in Pitch Perfect 2, at ICCA, only American teams have won since the contest began in 1996. The finals typically take place in New York City. Here's a performance by Pitch Slapped, the winning team from 2014:
So, while the A Cappella World Festival is a fictional creation, it looks like the ICCA is as close as we Pitch Perfect fans can get. Which is totally fine, because if all the groups have names as amazing as "Pitch Slapped," it's enough for me.
So...who's up for a road trip for the next championship performances?
Images: Richard Cartwright/Universal Pictures; Giphy (1)