Welcome to Varsity Vocals’ 28th 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 650 groups and over 10,000 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 28 years ago and we can’t wait to see how our 2024 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 Theatre
Saturday, January 27th, 2024


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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 27th.

The high school tournament is now in its 19th 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 26th.

 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.


Formal Houseparty is an auditioned ensemble of approximately 12 members performing throughout the Willamette Valley. In addition to competing locally and nationally, the ensemble often performs in the local community. 

The Green Note A Cappella is Portland State University's premier all-gender a cappella group. Established in 2010, the group has competed in many ICCA and have taken home many awards including Outstanding Arrangement, Outstanding Choreography, and Outstanding Soloist. When they're not competing, The Green Note loves to do karaoke and play on their Minecraft Realm. 

Divine, OSU's all-treble a cappella group, includes students from areas of study ranging from the arts to the sciences who all share a passion for singing. Divine performs on and off of OSU's campus, participates in local competitions, and meets twice weekly. Divine has been providing a space for students to connect with their fellow group members and community through music since 2003. 

Outspoken is Oregon State University's premier tenor/bass a cappella group! They have been in a recovery phase due to COVID but are now  back and better than ever! They are a fun-loving group that cannot live without music! They have competed in previous ICCA seasons, most recently earning a 2nd place finish at their 2020 Quarterfinals. They were so excited to continue, but lost their chance due to COVID, so this is their response and comeback year! Outspoken is so excited to grace the ICCA stage once again. 

Power Chord is Oregon State University's all-inclusive SATB a cappella group. The group has a blast performing on campus, at local venues, and in competitions in the Pacific Northwest. 

Mind The Gap is a mixed-voice competitive a cappella group from the University of Oregon founded in 2007 to create a gender-inclusive group on campus. Mind The Gap has a long history of competing in ICCA including four 1st place wins at Quarterfinals since 2014 and winning Outstanding Arrangement at their 2023 West Quarterfinal. The group has also been featured on the 2020 BOCA album. Mind The Gap has released three albums, two EPs and one single, including their recently released EP, Refraction, which features their 2023 ICCA set. The group is passionate about spreading their love for music and music education and is a strong advocate for a cappella through education. Mind The Gap has been the host group for the Rose City Sing-Off, a competition for high school groups in Oregon, for the past two years and they look forward to their third this spring. Mind The Gap members dedicate their time and passion to creating music and performing and are thrilled to continue their ICCA tradition. 

What's up(top)? Up Top is Willamette University's premier treble a cappella group! They bring good music and the best of vibes to their campus and community. Up Top believes in creating a space where every voice is valued and where a love of making music is shared. This is their fourth time competing in the ICCA. Their repertoire ranges from golden oldies to modern music, but with every song, their goal is to tell a story and make people smile! 

Headband hails from Willamette University, in the faraway land of Salem, Ore. They’ve been described as "vivacious" and "face-meltingly delicious" among other things, and are frequently cited as the least sweaty foreheads in the a cappella scene. Headband is lucky to share campus with three other incredible groups (Up Top, Tandem, and the Millstream Sailors) and they can usually be found in the wild performing with them and other groups around the state. Headband has been cooking up succulent tenor/bass jellies, preserves, and jams since 2003, competing in the ICCA for most of those years. This season, their 14 voices have put so much work into bringing their signature energy into every performance, and they couldn't be more proud of themselves. They hope you enjoy the ridiculous, beautiful spectacle that is Headband. Make sure to check them out on the world wide web in basically every place you'd expect an a cappella group to be to stay in tune with they’re upcoming projects!


Jackie Emmett attended Ricks College as a vocal performance major on scholarship where she performed as alto soloist in their presentation of Handel’s “Messiah.” After Ricks, she attended BYU and became the bass in the all-female a cappella group, Noteworthy, winning ICCA in New York during her second year with the group. More recently, she was the bass for the all-female a cappella group, JANE, and was excited to perform at Carnegie Hall as Finalists for the Open. She currently sings with the Portland Choir and Orchestra where she was a featured soloist. Jackie is happily married with four little boys, teaches voice lessons, is an ADHD and Productivity coach, and directs a youth choir in her area. 

Lisa Forkish (she/they) is a queer singer/songwriter, artivist, educator, community-builder, and vocal director, infusing all she creates with fierce authenticity and heart. Lisa uses song as an expressive art and a tool for building connection and her mission in life is to utilize music for personal and collective healing and liberation. Lisa has deep roots in both Eugene, Ore. and Oakland, Calif. and their vocal arranging and music directing work has been showcased alongside Kehlani, Ben Harper, Michael Franti, Pentatonix, and the Oakland Symphony Chorus. Lisa’s stint as director of her college a cappella group Divisi inspired the “Pitch Perfect” film franchise and she was previously named Portlandʻs “Songwriter of the Year.” More recently, Lisa was the founder and director of five-time National Champion high school a cappella group, Vocal Rush, who placed 3rd on NBCʻs “The Sing-Off.” A graduate of Berklee College of Music, Lisa has released five albums of original music. Her most recent album, From the Ashes, speaks to interconnectedness and the seemingly lonely paradox of the human experience through lush dissonant vocal harmonies. Lisa currently resides in Eugene where they direct Queer Choir Collective and offer music lessons and coaching services.

David Fowler is a music producer and creator from the Pacific Northwest who specializes in vocals and contemporary a cappella. A believer in “harmony through harmony," he aspires to make group singing more accessible to everyone. He has collaborated professionally with many accomplished singers and brands including Home Free, Malukah, Peter Hollens, David Archuleta, Sam Tsui, Chester See, and Taylor Davis. David is also a member of Verdant, an award-winning collective of singers native to Eugene, Ore., who seek to make the Pacific Northwest a home for vocal music. 

Dr. James Reddan is Chair and Associate Professor of Music, Director of Choral Activities and Music Education at Western Oregon University, where he directs the concert choir and chamber singers and coaches The West of Us. James is an in demand conductor, adjudicator, and clinician. Ensembles under his direction have achieved worldwide recognition, performing regionally, domestically, and internationally for prestigious venues and events. He made his Carnegie Hall conducting debut with the Western Oregon University Choirs in May 2022 and is preparing for a performance with the Berlin Philharmonic this June. James received the citation for Excellence in Music Education from the American Prize in Choral Music and was recognized as the conductor for the first Honored Artist Choral Ensemble. In addition to a busy touring schedule, James arranges and composes works for a cappella ensembles throughout the region and is an active music scholar, presenting research on music perception, music and gender, assessment in music, and more. Prior to his appointment at Western Oregon University, James taught at Frostburg State University and served as the Chair and Director of Choral Activities in the Performing Arts Department at Linn-Benton Community College in Albany, Ore. He also served as the choral music educator at Arbor View High School and Cannon Junior High School in Las Vegas, Nev. He holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in music education from Boston University, a Master of Music in choral conducting and music education from the University of Oregon in Eugene and a Bachelor of Arts in music education from McDaniel College in Westminster, Md. James completed additional studies at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music in Brisbane, Australia, the Oregon Bach Festival, and interned with the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. 

Peter Sepulveda is from Salem, Ore. and teaches music at McKay High School. During his time at McKay, he has coached state-qualifying choirs and directed Scots-Appella, a competitive a cappella group that has performed at ICHSA Semifinals and placed 2nd at the 2023 Finals. While studying at St. Olaf College, Peter performed with The Limestones, arranging and singing on their studio album, Down to Earth. He graduated from St. Olaf with a degree in vocal music education and received a Master of Education from Portland State University. Peter has collaborated with college groups, arrangers, clinicians, and producers throughout the country, while working to provide opportunities for his students to learn from experts of the artform. He is enjoying seeing contemporary a cappella grow in the Northwest. In addition to vocal music, Peter is currently teaching and building a cultural music program at McKay that celebrates varying styles of music from Mexico. He is honored to work in this new role and appreciates the opportunity to share the diversity and stories of the students at McKay through music-making.


Varsity Vocals would like to recognize and thank tonight's emcee and day-of producer, Jake Yoakum; photographer, Jake Young; our sound engineers Pete and Trina from Yoakum Light and Sound; and finally, all the staff at the Elsinore Theatre; our judges, hosts, competitors, volunteers, partners, and producers; and you, the audience, for supporting Varsity Vocals programming.

Amanda Newman
 Executive Director

Elise Hackl-Blumstein
ICHSA Director

PA/MA Program Coordinator

Dave Rabizadeh
 ICCA Director

Emily Sucher
 Director of Publications

Lucy Jacobs
 ICCA West Producer

Lindsay Howerton-Hastings
 ICCA South Producer

Arvin Zabalerio
ICCA Central Producer

Gemma Davies
 ICCA United Kingdom Producer

Emily Benjamin
 ICCA Northeast Producer

Danielle Sutherland
 ICHSA Midwest Producer

Adam McNeil
ICHSA Great Lakes Producer

Cameron Clemens
 ICHSA West Producer

Jody Hagler
 ICHSA Mid-Atlantic Producer

Bryce McCracken
 Associate Producer

Bri Decerio
 Associate Producer

Courtney Jensen
 Associate Producer

Emcee Extraordinaire

Sara Yood
Senior Producer

Emily Flanders
Director of Adjudication
 ICCA Great Lakes Producer

Andrew Poole
 Director of Digital Media

Charlotte Taylor
& Social Strategy

Holli Kitching
ICCA Mid-Atlantic Producer

Leah Alrutz
 ICCA Midwest Producer

Bronwyn Jensen
 ICCA Southwest Producer

Christopher Witham
 ICCA United Kingdom Producer

Jillian Kimberlin
 Senior Producer

Christopher Hoffman
 ICHSA Northeast Producer

Ben Garza
 ICHSA Southwest Producer

Luke Thomas
 ICHSA South Producer

Alaina Wegner
 Associate Producer

Jake Yoakum
 Associate Producer

Rebecca Williamson
 Associate Producer

Andrea Poole

ICHSA Director Emeritus


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 two placing groups at this event will advance to the 2024 ICCA West 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!