28th Annual

National Finals | Schedule | Recordings | National Champions | Rules | How to enter | About us

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The Harmony Sweepstakes A Cappella Festival is the premier American showcase for vocal harmony music. The annual national competition draws from hundreds of vocal groups from around the country with regional competitions in eight cities. The winning group from each festival is flown to perform in front of celebrity judges and a sold out house of enthusiastic a cappella fans at the National Finals.

2012 National Finals Champions

Six Appeal

Is Six Appeal a comedy group, a vocal ensemble, or a rock band? Audiences have been trying to answer that question for years. Swearing off instruments, Six Appeal uses a cappella singing to span decades of classic oldies, current chart toppers, and catchy original tunes. Featuring vocal dexterity and adventurous song selection, the group explores all genres with a far-reaching repertoire that will surprise and captivate audiences regardless of the setting. Despite their cheeky group name, the antics of these six young gentlemen provide a good natured atmosphere for their electrifying performance. A Six Appeal show will split your sides, feed your musical sweet tooth, and leave you wondering how in the world they pulled it off just with voices.

With members formally instructed in singing and musical composition, and over 70 combined years of musical training and experience, Six Appeal utilizes a diverse arsenal of style and entertainment. In addition, Six Appeal has a passion for spreading their a cappella music to every audience, and an essential aspect of their mission is to empower young singers in their educational outreach program. What makes these Six stand out from the crowd? Their Appeal.

2012 Results
1st
Six Appeal
2nd
GQ
3rd
Foreign Exchange
Audience Favorite
Six Appeal
Best Original Arrangement
"Steady As She Goes" Arr. Blair Baldwin
Best Original Arrangement
Katie Macdonald and Katie Gillis - "Timshel"
Best Original Song
"On Your Love" - Andrew Berkowitz, Six Appeal


2012 Participating Groups

Down 4 The Count
Down 4 The Count began in 2003, when six CSU Northridge students in the University's vocal jazz ensemble found they shared a common interest: wanting to sing ensemble vocal jazz without those pesky instrumentalists: in other words, A Cappella! Since that time, Down 4 The Count has won multiple awards (including three song-arrangement awards and 1st place at the 2009 San Diego A Cappella Competition) and they have performed at venues all over the greater Los Angeles and San Diego area, including the Jazz Bakery, The Coach House, The Coffee Gallery Backstage, San Diego IndieFest, and many more.

They have opened for both Rockapella and for Sixthwave. Their debut album, released in 2008, is for sale at Singers.com, on iTunes, Amazon, and probably several more. Although the group line-up has changed significantly since its inception, D4TC still features original arrangements with a distinctly jazz flavor.

Members: Colleen Keene, Penny Watson, Christine Tavares, Jason Lingle, Vincent Johnson
More Details

Six Appeal
Is Six Appeal a comedy group, a vocal ensemble, or a rock band? Audiences have been trying to answer that question for years. Swearing off instruments, Six Appeal uses a cappella singing to span decades of classic oldies, current chart toppers, and catchy original tunes. Featuring vocal dexterity and adventurous song selection, the group explores all genres with a far-reaching repertoire that will surprise and captivate audiences regardless of the setting. Despite their cheeky group name, the antics of these six young gentlemen provide a good natured atmosphere for their electrifying performance. A Six Appeal show will split your sides, feed your musical sweet tooth, and leave you wondering how in the world they pulled it off just with voices.

With members formally instructed in singing and musical composition, and over 70 combined years of musical training and experience, Six Appeal utilizes a diverse arsenal of style and entertainment. In addition, Six Appeal has a passion for spreading their a cappella music to every audience, and an essential aspect of their mission is to empower young singers in their educational outreach program. What makes these Six stand out from the crowd? Their Appeal.

Members: Jordan Roll, Michael Brookens, Trey Jones, Nathan Hickey, Reuben Hushagen, Andrew Berkowitz
More Details

Audiofeels
Audiofeels is a group of friends, whose eight individual musical tastes unite in one fascination for the unique capacity of human voice. They represent Vocal Play, a style that uses human voice for making music in a way that transforms an a cappella performance into a rich vocal orchestra. Using only their vocal chords to replicate instruments, Audiofeels in fact become instruments to create an impression of an entire orchestra on stage. Their adventure began in the Adam Mickiewicz University Choir in Poznan, Poland where they met and where after years of singing together they decided to pursue their dreams in a different "direction".

Members: Jaroslaw Weidner, Marek Lewandowski,, Marcin Illukiewicz, Bartosz Michalak, Michal Szajkowski, Bartosz Lehmann, Michal Stec
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Sing Theory
Sing Theory is a modern vocal quartet, dedicated to uniquely interpreting jazz and pop standards, and preserving and developing the art of vocalese. The quartet is a configuration of familiar faces from the Bay Area vocal jazz scene. Members of the group originally met through the De Anza College jazz ensemble Vocal Flight, and have sung together in several variations since the mid 1990s, including +4db, Vocalese Inc., Moodswing, and Clockwork. Sing Theory most recently appeared as the Angel City 4 in Hillbarn Theater's production of "City of Angels"

Members: Dave Duran, Zach Yaholkovsky, Juliet Green, Michelle Hawkins
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Foreign Exchange
Foreign Exchange is a female foursome made up of members from 3 different countries, brought together by the power of music. We formed in 2009 and have loved making music together ever since. We are officially a barbershop quartet, but we sing everything from jazz to disco to broadway classics. Over the last year we have been quite busy, traveling throughout the Northeast and performing for various groups. The cherry on top was when we became the Harmony, Inc. International Quartet Champion of 2011 in November. In March we began the process of recording our first CD which will drop in the fall. Check out our website or facebook page to find out more and to see if we'll be performing near you!

Members: Amanda Holloway , Morgan La Croix, Maria Gabriella, Nanda Landers
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Rooftop Rhythm
Rooftop Rhythm began in Spring of 2010 when Jacob, Nate, and Ashley began looking for a bass singer to complete the group. After a short search, Steve was brought into the fold and things took off. The quartet honed their style through practice, recreation, and a rough two weekends roofing a garage. Sure, Steve nailed Jake’s jeans to the roof, but the quartet survived and became close friends and hard workers. In July, their hard work paid off when they finished 49th in the world at the Barbershop Harmony Society International Convention. Rooftop Rhythm has sung in many venues, including contests, barbershop shows, corporate meetings, sporting events, and private functions. It’s rare for these four gentlemen to turn down the opportunity to show folks how great a cappella music can be. With a varied repertoire that includes barbershop, jazz, opera, Americana, and gospel, you’re sure to find something you like

Members: Ashley York, Jacob Oxley, Nathan Oxley, Steve Schoultz
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GQ
This group began in the summer of 2011, bringing together different musical backgrounds: jazz, pop, barbershop and musical theater. Things seemed to click so easily, they all knew that they could do great things. GQ brings some new repertoire to the a cappella scene, featuring material by some of their favorite artists you may not have heard, and exploring other possibilities outside of the norm. But most of all they have become really good friends who have a passion and drive for singing and who try to create something special each time they perform.

Members: Katie Gillis, Katie Macdonald, Amanda McNutt, Ali Hauger
More Details

2012 Judges

Steve Baker   

Steve Baker has been the Executive Director of the Freight & Salvage since 1996. Since its founding in 1968, the Freight has been a leading presenter of a cappella music—perhaps, as some have described, "the home of Bay Area" a cappella.” Groups who have performed there include The House Jacks, Bobs, M-Pact, Kitka, Hookslide, Edlos, Da Vinci's Notebook and many others. Before joining the Freight family he worked in the nonprofit arts sector as an attorney and a program administrator and attorney. In addition, Steve plays guitar and performs regularly with his musical cohorts at clubs and private events throughout the Bay Area.

Charles Eisler   

Charles Eisler is one of San Francisco's leading producers and managers of live theatre. Mr. Eisler has produced Beehive the 60’s Musical Sensation in Las Vegas, Detroit, Houston, Fort Worth, San Jose, and Phoenix, and on a 70-city national tour. In San Francisco, productions include the Cole Porter musical revue Cole, Forever Plaid, and Noises Off that toured to many West Coast cities. Mr. Eisler has acted as general manager for Sylvia, Free Food, Together Again, starring Sid Caesar and Imogene Coca, Night Dreams, and Tunnel Rats. Mr. Eisler owned and operated the Mason Street Theatre in San Francisco, where Shear Madness played for four years, and the Union Square Playhouse, which housed the comedy hit Late Nite Catechism. On Broadway, Mr. Eisler produced the Alan Jay Lerner musical, Music! Music! He general managed the national tours of Man of La Mancha with Richard Kiley, and Fiddler on the Roof with Hershel Bernardi; The Abbey Theatre; the Shenyang Acrobats, and the Wushu Martial Arts Exhibition from the Peoples’ Republic of China; The National Theatre of Greece; The National Folk Theatre of Ireland; and the Gavella Theatre of Zagreb. Mr. Eisler is currently co-writing a new musical that uses the words and music of Cole Porter.

Shai Fishman   

Shai's credits as a composer include the I-Max film Future Moon, Dinosaur's Prophecy, 2012: Secrets of the Mayans and Night of the Titanic. His original musical theater productions include: Brecht's The Caucasian Chalk Circle, Rachav's Cabaret, The Dream: A Band, Return to Sender, Samson & Delilah, and Towards the Horizon. Shai was recently honored for his musical direction and arrangements on T-Mobile's "Welcome Back" campaign and received the BTAA's 2011 best commercial of the year. Shai currently spends his time between New York City and Los Angeles, where he operates and runs Fish-i Studios - a production house and music label, in which he composes music for motion pictures, television, commercials and theater. Shai Fishman Serves as head composer for NASA, Houston Museum of Natural Science Avela Communications, Carnegie Museum of Natural History E-planetarium and RICE University and also as Project Manager at Amoeba Music, Hollywood and is the LP Restoration and digitization Project leader for Amoeba.com

Jesse Hamlin   

Jesse Hamlin is an award-winning music writer and a respected veteran reporter of the the San Francisco entertainment scene. Hamlin has a regular column in the San Francisco Chronicle where he has worked as senior jazz critic and arts reporter for many years. He also contributes regularly to SF Arts magazine and to San Francisco Classical Voice, where he writes about jazz, Latin and classical music. His work has appeared in the New York Times, California magazine and in many other print and online publications.

Chloe Veltman   

Chloe Veltman is the host and executive producer of VoiceBox, a weekly, syndicated public radio and podcast series about the art of the human voice and the best of the vocal music scene (www.voicebox-media.org), and a singer who especially enjoys performing in small vocal ensembles. She is currently a John S Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University. Find out more at www.chloeveltman.com

Complete list of 2012 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 be waived.

How to enter

Please send music and photos to the regional director :


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