Welcome to Varsity Vocals’ 26th season! Our enthusiasm for the art of a cappella is greater than ever after more than a quarter century of presenting the best student groups on stage and in the studio.

Our tournaments have grown from a handful of events to the massive showcase they are today, this year featuring more than 578 groups and 8,772 singers at 77 events across North America and the United Kingdom.

Our original tournament inspired the hit movie "Pitch Perfect," based on the nonfiction book documenting the true story of rival groups competing against each other in our very own ICCA. The "Pitch Perfect" franchise remains the highest-grossing musical series of all time.

Despite the incredible growth and mainstream popularity we’ve enjoyed, our focus remains sharply on the promotion and development of the talent that crosses our stage. We believe competition fosters growth, as groups work together toward a specific goal and cultivate lifelong skills and relationships.

We provide insightful feedback from our highly qualified judges – but more importantly, our singers get to connect with a larger audience from across the country, learning from their peers and finding inspiration in other groups.

Two years ago, our 2020 tournament was sidelined mid-season by the pandemic, and we were unable to crown champions for the first time. In 2021, as a cappella groups were unable to gather to rehearse or perform, we adapted our program by challenging groups to create 4-minute music videos, recorded and edited remotely. The astonishing artistry and skill in these videos is a testament to the adaptability, ingenuity, and determination of our competitors, and we couldn’t be prouder.

This season, we are again challenged by the pandemic, as we attempt to present live events across thousands of miles in an ever-changing COVID landscape. Although some of our events have been postponed or converted to virtual, we are determined to see the season through. Many groups haven’t been able to compete live since 2019 – some students for their entire high school or college career. We are humbled more than ever by the importance of our role in setting the stage for the creation of so much magic.

We have seen a cappella make great strides from where it began on our stage 26 years ago, and we can’t wait to see how our 2022 competitors push the envelope. Committed to promoting our singers and energized by the incredible music they create, we look forward to another memorable season. Thank you for joining us!


Amanda Newman
Executive Director



Elsinore Theater
Friday, March 25, 2022



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Since 1996, we have encouraged students worldwide to sing a cappella throughout their lives. Our programs include the International Championship of Collegiate A Cappella (ICCA), the International Championship of High School A Cappella (ICHSA), and the International Championship of A Cappella Open (The Open). We also annually produce The Best of College A Cappella (BOCA) and The Best of High School A Cappella (BOHSA) compilation albums.

Our a cappella competitions give top-notch a cappella groups the opportunity to showcase their talents for an international audience and to take home valuable feedback from our qualified judges. This year, competing groups will appear in venues all around the world, offering their energetic musical performances for your enjoyment.

The college tournament takes place from January through April in nine regions across the country and around the world. Each region holds anywhere from four to five Quarterfinals, and the top groups from each Quarterfinal advance to the Semifinal. The winning group at each Semifinal is named Regional Champion and advances to the ICCA Finals at The Town Hall in New York City on Saturday, April 23rd.

The high school tournament is now in its 17th year. The winners of each of seven Semifinal rounds will advance to the ICHSA Finals at The Town Hall in New York City on Saturday, April 22nd.

The Open Tournament celebrated its third year in summer 2019 and featured six Semifinals that lead to the Open Finals featuring those six Regional Champions, two Wild Card Champions, and our 2019 ICHSA and ICCA Champions. Those 10 groups competed in October 2019 at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

 For a full tournament schedule, visit us at



The performance order was determined by random draw this afternoon and will be announced from stage.        

Tonight’s performers will be evaluated on elements of their vocal and visual performance, which carry numerical weight. The highest and lowest score from the individual judges will be dropped for each group. Our judges may recognize exceptional performances with special awards as they see fit.

There will be a 15-minute intermission. After the final group has performed, a guest performer will entertain you while the scores are tabulated.

Because each group only has ten minutes to perform, we ask you to keep your applause to an enthusiastic minimum between songs. Please feel welcome to applaud as much as you want after each group has finished its set.

Videotaping and non-flash photography for personal use is permitted during the concert, so long as you do not disrupt our performers or other patrons. Due to licensing regulations, we do not provide a video or audio recording of this performance.



Free to Breathe is back for another year of a cappella glory. See you on the court! 

The Sherwood High School Mixolydians is a group of fun-loving musicians from Sherwood, Ore. They love spending time together just as much as they love singing and creating crowd-pleasing choreography. For the past six years, The Mixolydians have placed in the top three at the Portland Rose City Sing-Off. The Mixolydians are also proud of their 2015 ICHSA awards for Outstanding Choreography and Outstanding Arrangement of their entire set, in addition to ICHSA awards for Outstanding Arrangement, Outstanding Soloist, and Outstanding Vocal Percussion in 2020. Most recently, they are proud of placing 1st at both the 2020 ICHSA and the 2018 Bend A Cappella Festival.  The Mixolydians have enjoyed being a part of the ICHSA competition for nine years in a row and are so excited to be back! 

Synergy is the treble a cappella ensemble from the Oregon Children’s Choir, made up of treble singers from high schools in the Eugene and Springfield, Ore. area. Founded in the fall of 2012, Synergy was created by Evynne Hollens, co-founder of Divisi, the University of Oregon’s premier women’s a cappella group. In just their first year, Synergy placed 3rd at the ICHSA Northwest Semifinals. The singers of Synergy have established a reputation as a tight musical group with a bold sound, sharing musical stories of strength and empowerment. 

Scots-Appella is the auditioned a cappella ensemble at McKay High School. The group regularly performs at school and community events throughout Salem, Ore. Scots-Appella boasts a diverse group of students in the McKay community and they seek to incorporate the rich stories and traditions of their ensemble in everything they do. 

Vocal Spectrum from Madison High School in Rexburg, Idaho, is a group of 13 students (12 singers and an audio technician). As their name implies, they perform music from many different genres, including traditional choral literature, vocal jazz, and more recently, a cappella pop. They enjoy performing at several concerts each year and for other community events. 

Critical Mass is Orem High School's one and only contemporary a cappella group! Established in 2007, they have performed and competed all over the country, winning Best Show Choir in Disneyland in 2017. They love singing all types of music, including pop, country, ballads, and more. They are currently directed by BYU Noteworthy alum Amy Geis. 

Wolf PACappella is Pacifica Christian High School's premier co-ed a cappella group! In the three short years since Wolf PACappella was founded, this group has created a safe environment for aspiring young singers and arrangers to thrive, all while developing lifelong friendships, deepening their relationships with God, and, of course, further nurturing their love of music. As much as they love to sing, their mission, first and foremost, is to have fun.

Established in 2015, Take Note is an up-and-coming high school contemporary a cappella group, under the direction of Katie Linza. From Pinewood School in sunny Los Altos Hills, Calif., the students of Take Note range from freshmen through seniors, all of whom study hard, play hard, and sing hard. Take Note dives into many musical genres and styles, including pop, rock, R&B, and jazz, and they love every moment of it. Their first EP, WARRIORS, was released May 2019 and can be found on Spotify, iTunes, Amazon, Google, YouTube Music, and other major music streaming services. Their second EP, SUNDAY SHOE, was released May 2020 and is also available on all music streaming platforms.



Charlie Arthur began performing at a very young age, participating in as many musical ensembles, theatrical productions, short films, and middle school dance battles as he could seek out. He discovered his love for contemporary vocal music when he joined Forte, the award-winning a cappella group at Centerville High School. In Forte, Charlie received national recognition as a vocal percussionist and he began arranging, recording, producing, and teaching vocal music full-time. Over the last eight years, these experiences have taken him across the U.S., Canada, Russia, and the Caribbean, working and performing with vocal groups such as m-pact, The Cat’s Pajamas, and Vocalight. Charlie currently lives in Eugene, Ore., where he works full time as an engineer and production assistant for Peter Hollens. 

Matt Caruso is the owner and chief engineer at the exclusively a cappella studio and production company, ACappellaPsych, based in Portland, Ore. He has been singing, arranging, directing, and teaching contemporary a cappella for over 14 years. His "Aca-Jedi Mind Tricks" workshop has been a highly attended, extremely successful event offered at major a cappella festivals, such as the Los Angeles A Cappella Festival, Boston Sings, VoCAL Nation, AcappellaFest, SoJam, and more. He has performed masterclasses and clinics for choirs and a cappella groups around the country. From 2009-2012, Matt served as the music proctor and touring proctor for the American Boychoir and American Boychoir School in Princeton, N.J. Matt is thrilled to be back adjudicating for Varsity Vocals and he can't wait to be blown away by the incredible talent onstage tonight. 

Cassidy Garcia is an Oregon native, born and raised in Portland. She attended Cleveland High School and began her singing career in the elite choir, The ClevelanDaires. When she matriculated to University of Oregon, Cassidy joined the all-woman-identifying collegiate a cappella group, Divisi, and served as a singer, student government liaison, media manager, and trip planner. She won Best Soloist at the Los Angeles A Cappella Festival (LAAF) in 2014 and spearheaded music video production for Divisi’s recorded single, "11:59," which led the group to be invited to join Michael Franti on tour. Post-college, Cassidy has continued to keep music in her life by providing backing vocals for YouTube star Peter Hollens on multiple videos, including the well-received "Hamilton Medley." She can also be found performing in local theaters, notably singing “This Is Me” to a standing ovation in Evynne Hollen’s Songbook show series. After competing multiple times on the Varsity Vocals stage, Cassidy is excited to be back and lend her expertise to tonight’s talented students!

Mike Mendyke started his first vocal group, a barbershop quartet, in sixth grade, and has been hooked for life. He is probably best known for singing bass with Five O'Clock Shadow (FOCS) in the mid 90s, appearing on their album, So There. In 2000, Mike met beloved film and television star Dick Van Dyke in a Malibu Starbucks, leading to the formation of their vocal quartet "Dick Van Dyke and The Vantastix." For 22 years, The Vantastix has performed on radio, TV, and at performance art centers all over the country. In 2008, they released an album called Put On A Happy Face. In February of 2022, they released a Valentine's Day video featuring Dick singing a duet with his wife Arlene and the rest of the quartet backing them up.

Raymund Ocampo is a conductor with experience leading choirs of different age levels and talents, including symphonic choruses, and high-level ensembles. Raymund serves as Music Program Chair and Director of Choral Studies at Linn-Benton Community College. There, he conducts the highly acclaimed chamber choir and concert choir and teaches courses in music appreciation, theory, world music, and music fundamentals. Previously, Raymund served as the Bonita L. Bass Memorial Assistant Conductor for the Master Chorale of Tampa Bay, and has prepared choruses for symphonic conductors Michael Francis, Evan Rogister, Earl Rivers, Joshua Weilerstein, Jeff Tyzik, Stuart Malina, and Danail Rachav. His other leadership roles in the music world range from serving as Director of Music at Mt. Washington Presbyterian Church in Cincinnati, Ohio, to leading public school choral programs in Ohio and Indiana. In addition, Raymund founded and served as artistic director of 'ascend,' a professional eight-member vocal ensemble dedicated to performing new works in unique ways. Raymund holds a Master of Music in choral conducting from the University of South Florida, where he studied under the guidance of Dr. James Bass, and a Bachelor of Music in music education from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., where he studied with Dr. René Clausen and Dr. Paul Nesheim. 



Varsity Vocals would like to recognize and thank our judges, hosts, competitors, volunteers, partners, and producers; and you, the audience for supporting Varsity Vocals programming.



Amanda Newman
 Executive Director

Dave Rabizadeh
 ICCA Director

Elise Hackl-Blumstein
ICHSA Director
ICHSA Great Lakes Producer
PA/MA Program Coordinator

Andrea Poole
 ICHSA Co-Director

Lucy Jacobs
The Open Director
 ICCA West Producer

Andrew Poole
 Director of Digital Media

Erica Tackett
 Director of Marketing & Social Strategy

Emily Flanders
Director of Adjudication
 ICCA Great Lakes Producer

Emily Sucher
 Director of Publications

Patty Floyd

Virginia DeMoss
 Album Production Coordinator

Sara Yood
Senior Producer

Holli Kitching
ICCA Mid-Atlantic Producer

Lindsay Howerton-Hastings
 ICCA South Producer

Leah Alrutz
 ICCA Midwest Producer

Bronwyn Jensen
 ICCA Southwest Producer

Gemma Davies
 ICCA United Kingdom Producer

Christopher Witham
 ICCA United Kingdom Producer

Emily Benjamin
 ICCA Northeast Producer

Arvin Zabalerio
ICCA Central Producer

Jillian Kimberlin
 ICHSA Mid-Atlantic Producer

Danielle Sutherland
 ICHSA Midwest Producer

Jake McVey
 ICHSA Northeast Producer

Donald Paradis
 ICHSA South Producer

Cameron Clemens
 ICHSA West Producer

Courtney Jensen
 Associate Producer


Ben Garza
 ICHSA Southwest Producer

Katherine Mosher
 ICHSA South Day-Of Producer

Bri Decerio
 ICHSA West Day-Of Producer

Jake Yoakum
 ICHSA West Day-Of Producer



We have an amazing team of people who work tirelessly to make our programs so valuable for our singers and audiences alike — and they all do it while holding down full-time day jobs, too! 


The top placing group will advance to 2022 ICHSA Finals.



Find your favorite groups on The Best of College A Cappella (BOCA) and The Best of High School A Cappella (BOHSA), available for purchase on Apple Music and Amazon Music!