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



MacArthur High School
Saturday, February 25th, 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 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.

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.

 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.


Aperture is one of two a cappella groups at MacArthur High School, under the direction of Anna Gann and Kimberly Mendez. They started out as a non-competitive JV a cappella group in 2011. This year's group performed in the Briarcrest Invitational held in Memphis, Tenn., and they are excited to compete in their very first ICHSA. Aperture is the oldest JV a cappella group in Texas and they look forward to friendly competition this year. 

Gold Dust Avenue is a student-led a cappella group at Chaparral High School. They sing different genres of music, ranging from pop to ballads, and arrange all of their own pieces. They love to get together for potluck dinners, bonding activities, and sleepovers. They perform the national anthem at all school assemblies and sporting events and sing for senior citizen facilities and community gatherings. The group consists of different kinds of people with varying interests who share a passion for music.

PFC is excited to be performing tonight on their home base at MacArthur High School in San Antonio. Under the direction of Anna Gann, they are the 2011 ICHSA National Champions and were ICHSA Finalists in 2012, 2016, 2019, and 2020. They have opened for a cappella groups including Clearly Vocal, Overboard, Delilah, Arora, Dcappella, and The Swingles. Over the past several years, PFC performed as featured entertainment at TEDxYouth@Austin, host group and performers at the CASA-sponsored Texas A Cappella Celebration (TAC), host group at the South Texas A Cappella Camp and Talent Overload (STACCATO), and emcee and featured entertainment at ICCA Southwest Quarterfinals. Last year, they performed at the National A Cappella Convention (NACC) in Orlando, Fla., and this year at the One Voice invitational in Memphis. In 2019, they professionally recorded a song, “High Hopes,” that was retweeted and shared by the original artist, Panic! at the Disco with over 250k views and ultimately won a Contemporary A Cappella Recording Award (CARA). PFC has earned national recognition within the a cappella community and they are excited to carry forth that legacy and make PFC alumni proud. 

Madison Avenue is a group of singers from Madison High School's top choral ensemble who are passionate about a cappella music. This year, Madison Avenue is excited to compete in ICHSA and explore elements of the human experience through a cappella. 

Vocal Legacy is the mixed a cappella group from Bryan High School, composed of sophomores, juniors, and seniors. They enjoy spending time together, playing ping pong in the choir room, and eating at Wings & More. 

Madrigal is the varsity show choir at Belton High School. The students in this ensemble are also involved in the varsity choir on campus. They perform regularly for the school and for the Belton community. Madrigal performs a variety of styles including pop, musical theatre, a cappella, and jazz. Last year, the ensemble was invited to open for the rock band Foreigner. 


Reid Akers is a former member of the Texas a cappella scene who has competed in ICCA and in the Open. He served as the president of Texas A&M's HardChord DynaMix, with whom he won Outstanding Choreography awards in both ICCA and the Open. Under his leadership, HardChord DynaMix advanced to the Wildcard round for the first time ever in both ICCA and the Open. Reid arranged during his tenure in collegiate a cappella and conducted multiple workshops for other collegiate a cappella groups. He sang in a post-collegiate a cappella group called 908 which opened for the SING! Texas scholastic competition. He currently sings regularly in his church choir and is extremely excited to be back in the a cappella scene as a judge. 

Tyler Knowles began playing instruments at an early age, but didn't discover his voice as an instrument until he fell in love with a performance featuring UW-Madison's premier men's a cappella group, The MadHatters. He auditioned for the group, and learned he had a knack for singing really, really low. Tyler sang with The MadHatters from 2002-2005, competing in and hosting ICCA during that time. After college, he sang professionally in the a cappella quartet, The Traveling Sailsmen, on the Celebrity Infinity cruise ship, cruising from Alaska down to the Horn of South America and numerous ports in between. 

Stefanie Roberts is a seasoned a cappella performer based in Austin, Texas. She fell in love with a cappella while singing with The Mello Divas at Berkeley Preparatory School in Tampa, Fla. Stefanie co-founded The Sedoctaves, the University of Florida's first all-female a cappella ensemble, and directed the group for two years. Her original arrangement was the only post-collegiate track considered for Ben Folds' University A Cappella album. In 2009 and 2010, Stefanie went on to sing with and direct Loose Interpretations East in New York and most recently sang with Chorus Austin and the Austonettes. She has previously been an ICHSA and ICCA judge and performance coach in Florida and Texas.

Sue Schreiner received her B.A. and M.A. in vocal music performance from California State University-Northridge. After graduation, she served as a member of the Los Angeles Opera Company, performed as a featured soprano soloist with various symphonies and choruses throughout the country, and sang the national anthem for several professional sports teams including the New England Patriots and the Portland Trailblazers. She has taught vocal music students at both the university and the high school levels for the past 40 years until her retirement in 2016. Sue founded and directed the contemporary a cappella group, Soul’d Out, at Wilsonville High School in Oregon in 2007. Since then, the group has enjoyed great success, winning the Northwest ICHSA Semifinal in 2010, 2011, 2014, and 2018. They placed 2nd at ICHSA Finals in 2011, and were chosen to be the only high school group to perform on season 3 of NBC’s “The Sing-Off.” Sue has been a certified judge of a cappella, as well as state high school and college choir competitions, since 2008. She has judged and coached a cappella competitions throughout the Northwest, prior to moving to the Austin area in 2016. Sue loves Texas and she loves a cappella. 

Bonnie Wolfe-Smith started singing in her church choir in 5th grade, joined her high school choir, and hasn't stopped singing since. While at Texas State, she sang alto with the University Singers and the Texas State Chorale and was one of the founding members/directors of an a cappella group called Sugar and Spice. Bonnie taught for three years as a general music teacher in the SCUCISD district here in San Antonio. Currently, she is the assistant choir director and AP music theory teacher at Churchill High School in San Antonio and sings with a Sweet Adeline's Chorus, A Cappella Unlimited.


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

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 three placing groups at this event will advance to the 2023 ICHSA Southwest Semifinal.


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!