2015 Participating Groups
|The Bluesettes Quintet|
All jazz musicians, The Bluesettes Quintet breathes new life into current popular tunes utilizing a modern jazz sound, featuring a vocal trio as well as a vocal rhythm section. The five members work together to create new, innovative arrangements with a retro feel, striving to preserve the classic jazz style of the 1930s and 1940s.
Members: Ian Brekke, tenor/vocal percussion, Katrina Kochevar, soprano, Miko Shudo, alto, Rachel St. Marseille, soprano II, Riley Wilson, bass
Flipside's been entertaining folks for years with their simple style and unique arrangements of audience favorites. "We just have so much fun with this! The real joy is in sharing it with the people that come to see us." Based in Orange County and performing mainly around the southland, they go wherever the music takes them. From cafes to concert halls - rock, jazz, R&B, and more - Flipside's got something for every audience.
Members: Colleen Cowley - Soprano, Linda Cicino - Alto, Jay Welch - Tenor, Kenny Kurtz - Bass
|The Newfangled Four|
The Newfangled Four is a barbershop quartet based in sunny Southern California. Formed almost two years ago, this foursome quickly bonded through their involvements with the Westminster Chorus and Masters of Harmony, two well-renowned choruses within the Barbershop Harmony Society, and also through their commitments in leading a local youth barbershop chorus to prominence. Each with their own levels of musical and barbershop experience, it didn't take long for this quartet to start building a repertoire of challenging, yet exciting arrangements. The quartet was fortunate enough to become the 2013 International Collegiate Barbershop Quartet Champions and the 2013 Far Western District Quartet Champions. In July 2014, they placed 16th in the International Quartet Contest and received the Dealer's Choice Award for being the highest scoring debut quartet of the year. These guys are always looking to entertain audiences of all kinds, and they are constantly striving to be the next best thing!
Members: Tenor - Joey Buss, Lead - Jackson Niebrugge, Baritone - Ryan Wisniewski, Bass - Jake Tickner
Premiere is LA’s all-female musical powerhouse created to push the boundaries of all-female a cappella through their innovative, bold musical choices and style. Formed in April 2013, Premiere has emerged on to the LA music scene with a diverse repertoire ranging from contemporary pop and country to R&B and alternative rock. Balancing their commitment to the group with individual professional careers, these talented ladies each bring a unique musical background to the table. When the girls are not busy performing around LA, they enjoy bonfires on the beach, karaoke nights, and obsessing over The Sing-Off. Premiere was just recently the host group for the 2015 Los Angeles A Cappella Festival at Santa Monica High School.
Members: Meron Mogos (Bass), Jessica Gottdank (Alto/Soprano), Caroline Ferrari Cronin (Soprano), Sara Steinberg (VP, Alto), Kirby Welsh (Alto/VP), Melissa Henrie (Alto/Bass), Katharine Laursen (Soprano)
| Red Harmony|
Based in Los Angeles, California, Red Harmony tailors its selection of songs to the voices and personalities of its singers in order to present a fresh and original performance. Each member brings a very unique style, specialty, and energy to the table, creating a synergistic culture where ideas are shared and creativity is celebrated. From accompanying each other with rhythmic vocals to reveling in crunchy jazz chords, Red Harmony creates a personal experience with every note.
Members: Mandy Wilson; Soprano I, Marissa Dubois; Soprano II, Elizabeth Matson; Alto I, Leah Hamilton; Alto II, Aaron Schumacher; Tenor I, Ryan Espinosa; Tenor II, Nate George; Baritone, Christopher Thaxter; Bass
RockNacappella is a vocal performance group specializing in pop, rock, musical theatre, gospel, and patriotic selections. The program was founded in early 2014 by their 17-year-old arranger and director, Lindsay Ryan. In a relatively short amount of time, the group has garnered a lot of success and attention. RockNacappella performs at concerts, events, and ceremonies all around the Los Angeles area, including the Pantages Theatre and the GRAMMY Museum, and they have appeared on KCAL9 and CBS-LA. RockNacappella’s performers at Harmony Sweepstakes are 13 to 17-years-of-age, and they are well supported by twenty-six other talented performers in their full group.
Members: Lindsay Ryan (VP/Mezzo), Connor Hahm (Bass), Matt Villar (Baritone), James Meske (Tenor), Grace Hyland (Alto 2), Maddie Roberto (Alto 1), Lizzy Keiser (Soprano 2), Kailei West (Soprano 1)
| Swing Shift|
Swing Shift styles itself as a vocal jazz/pop sextet. The group’s signature sound is their rich harmonic treatment of jazz, pop, and Broadway standards. They appear locally at clubs and private parties. Appearing at the LA Harmony Sweepstakes in 2004, Swing Shift was honored with the best arrangement award for "Where is Love?" And again in 2011, the group won best arrangement for its jazz version of “This Heart of Mine.”
Our roster has drawn over the years from the SMC Vocal Jazz ensemble including three of the present roster (Sandra, Dakota, and Richard). We are proud that many of Swing Shift’s alumni have gone on to advance their professional careers in such prestigious ensembles as the LA Master Chorale, Aurora, New Directions, and LA Choral Lab.
If you like lush sounds, complex harmonies, and creamy-smooth blend, you’ll love hearing this group.
Members: Sandra Pehrsson (soprano), Anne Palmer (soprano),, Janette La Bella (alto), Dakota Lee Martinez (Tenor), Phil Azelton (Baritone), Richard Gilinsky (Bass)
Honey Whiskey Trio
|Honey Whiskey Trio blends sounds and styles from folk, bluegrass and jazz. This trio found its roots in the vocal jazz department of CSU Long Beach where the members all studied with Christine Guter, though at different times. Years later, well into their own careers as musicians and educators, the need for a new outlet for musical exploration brought Courtney, Ann and Christina together and the Honey Whiskey Trio was formed.
Members: Courtney Gasque, Ann Louise Thaiss , Christina Wilson
||Amy Engelhardt |
Amy Engelhardt was the sole female member of genre-busting, Grammy-nominated a cappella quartet THE BOBS from 1998 to 2011. Also one of their primary writer/arrangers, Amy was honored with the 2011 Burman Award for Songwriting from the Manhattan Association of Cabarets (MAC). She also garnered three BroadwayWorld Award nominations for writing and performance in "Two Bobs, No Waiting," with Bob Malone of the John Fogerty Band. Amy's score for BASTARD JONES (a rock musical adaptation of Henry Fielding’s TOM JONES) was a Finalist for the Richard Rodgers Award. The show was recently workshopped in New York and will premiere off-off-Broadway in 2015. The Writer and Artistic Producer of TUNE IN TIME, New York City's Musical Theater Game Show running monthly at the York Theatre, Amy splits her time between New York City and Los Angeles. Amy teaches songwriting and vocal performance (solo/group) privately and at vocal festivals across the US, and is the only honorary female member of the Vienna Boys Choir. It's true!
Complete list of 2015 participants
Interested in Performing?
We are always seeking groups who would like to participate
in our events.
Groups of any style are welcome, but you must have between
3 and 8 members. We have a rule book which explains many of the
details of the event, which you can see by clicking here. All groups must audition in
order to compete. Generally this is done by sending a current tape
and photo, although live auditions are sometimes arranged. The
purpose of the audition is to make sure the group is appropriate for
the Festival and to help the Director determine the performance
order. If a group has competed previously, the audition process may
How to enter
Please send tapes and photos to the regional director :
Will Hamblet (Los Angeles)
The South Bay Coastliner Chorus has been a member of the Barbershop Harmony Society (BHS) for over half a century. For the last 15 years, the Coastliners have sponsored the Los Angeles Regional Harmony Sweepstakes program. As such, they are the only BHS organization involved in this competition. During their sponsorship, the Los Angeles Regional is proud to have produced 5 National winners & 2 second place finalists.
willhamblet (at) adelphia.net