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



Marcus High School
Saturday, March 11th, 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.


Plano West Senior High School has a long-standing tradition of choral excellence. Syncopation has acted as an outreach group for years, singing an array of literature from madrigal favorites to pop hits. 2020 was a challenging time for musicians and the world at large. As the virtual world began to explode, they were presented with the opportunity to venture into the pop a cappella arena. The students were excited to embark on a new journey for the school and worked tirelessly to build an inclusive musical community. All students embraced the challenge and often uncomfortable nature of trying something brand new to build something beautiful. Within the course of one year, the students evolved completely as performers and are incredibly proud of their efforts. Each day, the students of Syncopation strive to become the best versions of themselves. 

Remedy is a contemporary vocal ensemble made up of men and women in all grades with considerable choral singing experience. This ensemble performs at all AHS Choir functions on campus, off campus, and competes throughout the year in local and national a cappella competitions. In their most recent competition, AcaTex 2021, Remedy finished in 2nd Place! 

Rockwall High School's Sting was formed in 2018 as an all-treble a cappella ensemble, placing 2nd at Sing! Texas that same year. In 2021, after entering ICHSA for the first time, Sting placed 3rd in Finals for their production of “Denim Jacket” by Sammy Rae and the Friends. Returning to ICHSA the next year, Sting was the top-ranked all-treble ensemble, earning runner-up in the Wild Card round. Their Contemporary A Cappella Recording Award (CARA)-nominated debut album, Coronation, is available for listening on all major streaming platforms. 

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. 

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 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. 

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. 

Infiniti began at the school's inception in 2005 as a show choir and rebranded into a contemporary a cappella group in 2018. Infiniti performs at events throughout the year and competes at local and national a cappella competitions. They have competed in ICHSA each year since 2019, earning top placements and their first trip to Finals in New York City in 2022. They won 1st place at Acatex 2022, in addition to special awards for Best Choreography and Best Vocal Percussion. Infiniti will be releasing their first single in the next few weeks and it will be available on all streaming platforms. Infiniti hopes to release more recorded music and will continue competing in live competitions as much as possible! 

Sachse High School's Mane Attraction is a contemporary a cappella and chamber choir ensemble. Membership is open to all choir students in grades 10-12 through auditions held the previous spring (limited to approximately 16-20 students). Students in this ensemble display the highest levels of musicianship in sight-reading, improvisation, and showmanship. They annually participate in the GISD Chamber Choir Festival and UIL Solo and Ensemble Contest, and produce an annual Madrigal Dinner. Mane Attraction received Superior ratings at the American Classics Madrigal and Chamber Choir Festival in San Antonio (2007, 2012, 2014, and 2017), were selected to receive a “Performance of Distinction” at the American Classics Madrigal and Chamber Choir Festival (2012 and 2014), and were selected as the overall winner at the Texas Renaissance Festival’s Early Music Competition (2008). 

Beyond was established at Rockwall Heath High School in 2020 as a treble a cappella group. Beyond includes students in grades 9-12 and they are all members of a larger choral ensemble. They compete in competitions such as ICHSA and Acatex. Beyond just released their first single in January, "Falling Water,” and hope to record more music in the future. They are excited to compete live at ICHSA this year! 


Wes Davis is in his second year as Head Choral Director at Marcus High School, having been the assistant director for five years. During this time, he founded a female contemporary a cappella group called Fusion. Fusion is very active at Marcus and in the community, performing at school functions, sporting events, community events, and fundraisers for charities in the area. As the group’s director, arranger, and choreographer, Wes has led Fusion to a top-three finish in ICHSA Southwest Semifinals for the past three years. In 2015, Fusion won its Semifinal and competed at Finals in New York. Wes is a member of the A cappella Education Association (AEA), Women’s A Cappella Association (WACA), Texas Music Educators Association (TMEA), Texas Choral Directors Association (TCDA), and the Texas Music Adjudicators Association (TMAA). 

Gregory Hilliard Jr. serves as the artistic director of Austin Harmony Chorus, a barbershop chorus based in the Live Music Capital of the World and affiliated with Sweet Adelines International. A recent transplant to the Lone Star State, he previously served as the frontline music director of The Capital Chordsmen, the chorus of the Tallahassee, Fla. chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society. Under his leadership, The Chordsmen achieved the highest scores in the ensemble's 60+ year history at district competition, including a 2nd place finish. He served on the music team with The Marcsmen, six-time BHS International Chorus Finalists based in San Antonio, and has won awards singing with men's and mixed barbershop quartets, notably Headline (Sunshine District 2nd Place Quartet) and Capital Edition (inaugural Florida Mixed Barbershop Quartet Champions). Gregory is a certified music educator and currently teaches choir at a middle school in the Austin area. He earned his Bachelor of Music Education from The Florida State University, where he served as the co-creator/co-music director for The FSU Acafellas, the university's first registered all-male a cappella group (the pre-cursor to the pre-cursor to Reverb, 2013 ICCA Finalists), and his Master of Music in choral conducting from Texas State University. He maintains an active schedule as a baritone solo/choral vocalist, guest conductor/clinician, and adjudicator. 

Hailing from the soybean capital of the world, Elliott Robinson is the current bass man and co-founder of Axiom Vocal. El is an a cappella veteran, having toured the globe with professional groups Chapter 6, The House Jacks, Home Free, and more. You also might recognize his rich bass notes as being the sonic foundation of Das Sound Machine in “Pitch Perfect 2.” In his spare time, he enjoys reading, working out, listening to music (with instruments), and being grateful that he no longer lives in Minnesota. 

Lindsay Swartwood is in her 11th year of teaching choral music in Texas. After eight years serving as the Associate Director of Choral Activities at Flower Mound High School, she became Director of Choral Activities at Flower Mound High School. Lindsay graduated with a B.M. in music education and vocal performance from Texas Tech University, summa cum laude, and has undertaken graduate study at Southern Methodist University. A native of Denton, Texas, Lindsay currently serves as the TMEA Area C Vocal Chair and has previously served as TMEA Region 2 Vocal Division Chair, TMEA Region 2 Vocal Division Treasurer, and SWACDA R&R Chair for TTBB/Men’s Choirs. She is a recipient of the TCDA’s Young Director of Distinction award (2016) and served as alto section leader for the TMEA Treble Choir (2017). She has assisted and directed choirs that have performed at TMEA (2015) and National ACDA Conventions (2017). Prior to her appointment at Flower Mound High School, Lindsay directed choirs in Krum ISD and Mesquite ISD. Choirs under her direction have received consistent sweepstakes at UIL contests and have been successful at solo and ensemble, region, and state contests. Her professional affiliations include active memberships in ACDA, TMAA, TCDA, and TMEA. 


Varsity Vocals would like to recognize and thank emcee Drew Howard and guest performers Fusion and Dually Noted; 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 ICHSA 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!