Welcome to Varsity Vocals’ 27th 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 610 groups and over 9,100 singers at 85 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 cinematic 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.  

We have seen a cappella make great strides from where it began on our stage 27 years ago, and we can’t wait to see how our 2023 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



Pabst Theater
Sunday, March 26th, 2023


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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 29th.

The high school tournament is now in its 18th 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 28th.

 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.


Established in March of 2022, Public Hearing is UW-Milwaukee's one and only contemporary a cappella group. Many group members have previous ICHSA experience in groups such as GET’s Vocal Point and Port Washington’s Limited Edition. UW-Milwaukee previously lacked a collegiate a cappella scene, so this group’s mission is to set an example for their campus and build a community just as vibrant as UW-Madison. Although primarily composed of freshmen, Public Hearing is a diverse and incredibly inclusive environment. As the name “Public Hearing” suggests, they often tackle music that is anthemic or has undertones of political justice. They also like experimenting with genres and sing anything from pop to country, rock, and even hip-hop. Their vocal style can be described as both passionate and technical and they devote much rehearsal time to discussing the meaning of their music and how to communicate the emotions behind it. They hope to share those emotions and stories with you, as their story is yet to be written. 

Under A-Rest is a gender-inclusive a cappella group composed of students from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Under A-Rest, or “UAR,” is UW-Madison’s newest competitive a cappella group who loves entertaining new audiences each year, performing in venues all over the region. Last year was Under A-Rest's first year competing at in-person ICCA Quarterfinals and they are thrilled to be back! Throughout the year, they do gigs, hold concerts, and have a winter tour to high schools around the state. Aside from those events, they dedicate many hours to ICCA and could not be more excited to showcase their hard work. This year, they hope to record and publish their very first album! Keep an eye on their social media for future updates about their members and upcoming fun activities. Under A-Rest is super excited for this year’s ICCA and can't wait to witness many talented groups and perform for an amazing audience! 

Maize Mirchi is the University of Michigan’s premier fusion a cappella group. Performing on and off campus and competing in Dallas, Chicago, New York, and all across the nation, this group operates by the motto "South Asian-inspired, but never required." They use elements of South Asian and Western music to create a unique a cappella sound. They aspire to build a beautiful, musically inclined family full of love and mutual respect. 

Amazin' Blue (AB) is an experimental, collaborative a cappella group committed to producing music that pushes the boundaries of contemporary a cappella. Since its founding in 1987 at the University of Michigan, Amazin' Blue has produced 17 studio albums and performed at venues throughout the nation. They are proud to share their music with the Michigan community, alongside 14 other member groups of the Michigan A Cappella Council. AB recently celebrated its 35th anniversary and accepted its 200th member, representing their long history of love, friendship, and innovation. 

No Comment is a passionate, ambitious group of best friends that hold an unbreakable bond to one another and the music they make. Although only 18 years old, this 15-member group has already made a great name in University of Illinois a cappella history and doesn't plan on slowing down. NoCo has recorded four studio albums and eight singles, all of which are available for streaming on all platforms. With that, give it up for No Comment! 

Clef Hangers is the first mixed vocal a cappella group at Illinois State University. Founded in August 2008, the group began with a small group of ambitious students who shared a passion for a cappella music. Each group member since then has helped make the Clef Hangers what it is today. This performance ensemble consists of bass and treble voices, typically with three to five voices on each part, plus a vocal percussionist. The Clef Hangers is open to all majors and auditions take place each semester. They typically rehearse three days a week for two hours each time. These rehearsals are crucial meeting times for the group to reconnect and to produce a cohesive sound with high-caliber musicality. Rehearsals are primarily run by a music director, but relies on collective input for final performance decisions. New repertoire is chosen each semester by the current group members and these selections showcase the wide range of musical interests of the group. All of their music has been arranged by current or graduated members of the Clef Hanger family. They perform all over campus throughout the semester and have their own concerts free of charge to the university and community. 

The G-Men, or Gentlemen for long, is a group of friends who love making music together at the University of Michigan. They change, they get older, they come, they go, but their ideals have endured. Since its founding in 1995, The G-Men have become known across the land for their confident  performance style. Despite being dedicated students, natural empaths, and a soccer team recognized at a nearly county-wide level, The G-Men have struggled to accept that existence is ultimately defined by perception. For instance, though history books insist that The G-Men’s mark on collegiate a cappella began only 27 years ago, Prometheus was but a swaddling babe when the first plans for G-Men’s “Mr. Brightside” arrangement began to materialize. Mesopotamian hunter-gatherers hummed the tunes that would eventually become their 2015 album, Abcdefh. Michelangelo dared not paint the Sistine Chapel in shades of blue and white, for fear that a Gentlemanly power might smite him where he stood. The G-Men are committed to an elevated style of performance art, which deconstructs music and spectacle, while entertaining audiences. The Gs definitely weren’t partaking in Super Smash Bros. money matches on a portable Switch backstage five minutes ago. 

Capital Green is Michigan State University's oldest co-ed a cappella group, singing together since 1998. Currently made up of 17 members, they are a tight-knit family and enjoy performing across Michigan. When they aren't singing, they enjoy late-night trips to Applebee's and BJ's, going on retreat up north each fall, and having Super Smash Bros tournaments. If you like what you hear today, you can stream more of their music on Spotify or Apple Music and find them on Instagram @msucapitalgreen. 

Voices in Your Head is a student-run a cappella group from the University of Chicago which aims to "push the bounds of contemporary a cappella." Founded in 1998, the group has included undergraduate and graduate students whose studies range fromeEconomics to music to M.D./Ph.D. programs. Its unique repertoire includes original pieces, as well as an eclectic mix of pop, R&B, rock, and alternative music. Their newly-released single, “Wolves,” won three Contemporary A Cappella Recording Awards (CARAs) and was featured on BOCA 2022, and “My Day Will Come” was featured on Voices Only 2022. 

Formed in 1996, Northwestern University's Purple Haze A Cappella has been singin', dancin', and lovin' for over 25 years! Over the past quarter-century, Purple Haze has evolved into a stellar group of talented musicians, as well as a PHamily of fun, creative, and enthusiastic friends. Ranging from their annual fall inter-collegiate invitational, Best of the Midwest, to themed concerts throughout the year, there’s a little something in their music for everyone. Purple Haze has recorded nine studio albums and is working on their 10th, planned for release in 2024. Last year, their single “Bass Song” was chosen for Voices Only 2022. The a cappella podcast “Mouth Off” called them "the best you're going to hear out of the whole Midwestern United States" and "the group that everyone wants to party with!" Beyond their home turf of Evanston, Ill., Purple Haze performs throughout the Chicagoland area and around the world. Purple Haze has traveled to Cuba, the Netherlands, Ireland, the Dominican Republic, Peru, and more! Purple Haze is beyond grateful to return to the ICCA stage! For more information on the group, its members, or their music, visit or their Instagram @purplehazenu. 


HRMNX is a five-person contemporary a cappella group brought together in November 2022 to build a fun, high-impact two-hour show. Over 40 performances, 500+ positive reviews, and an Olympic pool-sized amount of peppermint tea later, they've taken the world by storm with their tight harmonies, charming personalities, and undeniable chemistry. You never know what to expect in a HRMNX performance, but you're bound to have a great time. @hrmnxofficial 


Dr. John Bragle is a former member and coach of The Michigan State University Accafellas, and in addition to several high school a cappella groups, has provided arrangements for MSU’s Capital Green, University of Michigan's The Friars, and SUNY Buffalo’s Royal Pitches. From 2005-2022, he served as Director of Choirs and Instructor of Voice at Interlochen Center for the Arts Academy and Camp. Currently, he is the Director of Community Programs at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, where he supervises more than 50 music teaching artists who provide instruction to more than 12,000 students across southeast Wisconsin who would otherwise have no access to music education. 

Maggie Condon is a music educator currently teaching high school choir in Wauwatosa, Wis. She earned her B.F.A. in music education from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and her Master of Music Education from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Maggie has directed, served as a clinician, and arranged for many high school a cappella groups, and notably directed the 2019 Great Lakes Semifinals 3rd place group, Graftonics. Outside of a cappella, Maggie teaches and coaches contemporary voice through musical theatre and private lessons. She is thrilled to be joining the outstanding Varsity Vocals team as an adjudicator and looks forward to hearing all the students perform!

Benjamin Lebovitz, a graduate of the University of Arizona, is an experienced arranger, clinician, and educator. As Arizona's ambassador to the Contemporary A Cappella Society (CASA) and with the state's chapter of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), he organizes regional festivals for collegiate and high school ensembles while regularly facilitating at music educator conferences. A National Board Certified Teacher in music, Ben taught at Walden Grove High School for seven years prior to returning to the classroom. Today, he is a Ph.D. student in education and an active musician in Madison, Wis. 

Kimberly Raschka Sailor is the current Editor-in-Chief of the Recorded A Cappella Review Board (RARB), and she has written more than 300 reviews of high school, collegiate, and professional groups since 2005. A former ICCA Finalist, Kimberly is the co-founder and past president of the University of Southern California's Reverse Osmosis. Kimberly has also served as a CARA nominator and judge. In addition to volunteering in the a cappella community, Kimberly is an author and elected school board member for the Mount Horeb Area School District in Wisconsin, where she also sings with the Mount Horeb Chorale. This is Kimberly's 14th year adjudicating for Varsity Vocals. 

Sam Wulterkens started singing a cappella at University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire with The Innocent Men. He has bachelor's and master's degrees in music education, and currently teaches at Oak Creek High School. With his co-director, Gillian Pacetti, Sam leads two ensembles at Oak Creek, who have been active members of the ICHSA community. His group, Knight Club, qualified for ICHSA Semifinals for three straight years, and competed at the 2019 ICHSA Finals. He also directs the highly lauded Ladies Knight, who, along with Knight Club, have qualified to compete at the Semifinal level. He serves as a board member and district representative for the Wisconsin Choral Directors Association. 


Varsity Vocals would like to recognize and thank HRMNX, Elise Hackl, Elise Schroeder, Lee Conway, Robert Tyree, Sam Wulterkens and Gillian Pacetti of Oak Creek High School, and the staff of The Pabst; 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

PA/MA Program Coordinator

Lucy Jacobs
The Open Director
 ICCA West Producer

Emily Flanders
Director of Adjudication
 ICCA Great Lakes Producer

Andrew Poole
 Director of Digital Media

Erica Tackett
 Director of Marketing

& Social Strategy

Emily Sucher
 Director of Publications

Sara Yood
Senior Producer

Holli Kitching
ICCA Mid-Atlantic Producer

Lindsay Howerton-Hastings
 ICCA South Producer

Arvin Zabalerio
ICCA Central 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

Jillian Kimberlin
 ICHSA Mid-Atlantic Producer

Danielle Sutherland
 ICHSA Midwest Producer

Jake McVey
 ICHSA Northeast Producer

Cameron Clemens
 ICHSA West Producer

Ben Garza
 ICHSA Southwest Producer

Luke Thomas
 ICHSA South Producer

Adam McNeil
ICHSA Great Lakes Producer

Nicole Kholweiss
 ICCA Central Day-Of Producer

Courtney Jenson
 Associate Producer

Emcee Extraordinaire


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 at this event will advance to the 2023 ICCA Final.


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!