2007 Participating Groups
Since 2006, the guys have blended traditional and contemporary all- vocal music with energy and humor to create six decades of hits live on stage at every show. Every sound - vocals, bass, effects, even the drums - is created using only the voice. They have performed all over their native Pittsburgh, and nationwide from Washington, D.C. to the San Francisco Bay, as well as features on local news, television, and radio. In the Harmony Sweepstakes, they were Mid-Atlantic Champions and Audience Favorite in 2007 and have received two awards for Best Arrangement.
Listen to: Steal My Kisses | Listen to: Lion Sleeps Tonight
Members: Eric Manalo, Mike Yanchak, Luke Clavey, Nate Wildfire, Dave Wilson, Michael Bodnar
From their humble roots of Craig's List and the Metro Center Caribou coffee shop, seven young singers are about to take the capital's breath away with joyful a cappella harmonies. Euphonism is Washington, DC's newest a cappella group, composed of four men and three women with diverse musical backgrounds including theater, jazz, classical, barbershop and choir ˜ who share a passion for the pure, electrifying blending of voice. Members of Euphonism will bring a mixture of angelic harmonies, driving beats and moving rhythms to audiences in the capital area.
Members: Gillian Sowray, Amanda Cornaglia, Jenny Libster, Joseph Kang, Jason Sam, Guy Divita, Hugh Gee
Glorious has been together since 1997. During this time we have become a group of tight knit, polished and professional performers. Our unique A Cappella style leaves very little room for imperfections in our sound. Drawing from our individual spiritual backgrounds, and combining tried and true spirituals with an upbeat tempo. We create a unique listening experience. Worship, Punctuality and Professionalism are the cornerstones to our organization.
Members: Michael Lemon, John Elliott, Larry Arrington, Barry Fleming, Eugene Gleaton
The Pelicans are an octet drawn from a group of singers based in Laurel, MD, who enjoy performing various styles of music. They launched the group during Laurel Mill Playhouse's youth production of The Music Man in the summer of 2005. They had such a good time singing barbershop that they just kept on harmonizing. They have been pleased to perform at various church and community functions, including Laurel's Main Street Festival and Riverfest. They are also proud to have been invited twice to perform the National Anthem at RFK stadium in Washington, DC. The members of the group, aged teens to grandparents, have performed an amazing variety of genres, from lounge acts to opera, as wedding singers and country & western singers. In addition to barbershop, the group loves singing styles ranging from Broadway show tunes to big band and doo-wop.
Members: Erika Cogliani, Kathryn Binney, Kirby Forssell, Heather Heaps, Jocelyn Knazik, Stu Knazik, Martha O'Hehir, Barbara Strang
| Vocal Obsession|
Vocal Obsession consists of five friends who have sung in various ensembles for the past twenty years, and decided to form a group devoted to a cappella music. They have performed separately, gaining recognition in ensembles and as soloists in the US and Europe (including Orlando, Chicago, Amsterdam, Montreux, Vienna, Strasbourg, and Liege). In 2003 Vocal Obsession decided to band together to sing sans instruments. While they began primarily as a jazz group, they enjoy singing all types of contemporary a cappella tunes. This is Vocal Obsession's third appearance at the Sweeps. They won Best Original Song in 2005 and 2006. Maybe there are better things in the cards for them this year
Members: Donna Youngberg, Marianne Pastelak, Dotti Smith, Charles Braungard, Harry Maloy
||Cal Sexton |
Cal Sexton has been singing in a cappella groups since the eighth grade, when his chorus director asked how many boys wanted a pass to get out of Homeroom and sing instead. Cal raised his hand, and that’s how it all began. At the age of 19, he became the tenor of then current Barbershop Harmony Society’s International Champion Quartet, The Lads of Enchantment. By the age of 21, Cal had moved to Los Angeles, and spent the next ten years as a full-time professional group singer. On the road, on television, films, commercials, and recordings, Cal has performed with Judy Garland, Julie London, Harry Belafonte, Jimmy Dean, Glen Campbell, the Norman Luboff Choir, the Robert DeCormier Singers and many others. After more than 10 years of singing for a living, Cal decided it was time to make singing his avocation instead of a vocation. When asked why he decided to leave full-time singing, Cal replied, “For over 10 years I got paid for what I would do for nothing. I figured that sooner or later they’d get wise to me, so, I got out.” Since then, Cal has continued with his singing through the Barbershop Harmony Society, as a quartet singer, chorus director, coach, and Certified Judge. Cal earned his Chorus Gold Medal as a member of the ten times International Chorus Champion, the Vocal Majority, of Dallas, Texas.
Carolyn Sexton is no newcomer to the Harmony Sweepstakes – she and husband Cal were both judges at the 2001 and 2002 competitions. For most of her adult life, Carolyn has been a proud member of Sweet Adelines International. She became an International Quartet Champion in this organization of women who teach and train the art of singing 4-part a cappella harmony, barbershop-style. During her long association with this singing organization, Carolyn served as an award-winning Chorus Director, Judge, Education Faculty member and Coach of many outstanding choruses and quartets from all over the U.S. & Canada. After switching voice parts recently (from tenor to bass), she is now working in a new combination called Gold Dust. Who knows…we may see them on the Harmony Sweepstakes stage in the future! Her latest passion is founding a new mixed a cappella chorus in the greater Frederick, MD area.
||Kieran Daly |
Kieran Daly's love for music can be traced back to the day he learned how to put the needle on the record. He performed his first solo in fifth grade with the select Cambiata Boys Choir in his hometown of Wethersfield, CT. Through high school, he sang in church and high school choirs, chamber choir, and played featured and lead roles in his high school musical productions. In 1988, Daly was a founding member of the Wethersfield Teen Theatre Company, which still provides teens with summer theatre opportunities to this day. He helped expand the opportunties to all ages, co-founding The Dreamcoat Theater Company in 1990. Voice over work and acoustic coffee house performances rounded out his experience until he founded Seventh Heaven, a men's a cappella group, at Albright College in Reading, PA. After graduation, Daly relocated to DC, and sang for several years with DC's Take Note! and Mojo Vox. Today he can be seen from time-to-time singing at select shows with 80s tribute band The Reflex when he's not "serving time" as the soulful tenor for Cartoon Johnny, who won the Mid-Atlantic Regional in 2005 and brought the house down as hosts in 2006. He is currently working on Cartoon Johnny's latest CD, due out late this summer.
Complete list of 2007 participants
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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 12 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 music and photos to the
regional director :
Amanda Cornaglia (Mid-Atlantic)
Amanda Cornaglia is the manager for Acaville Radio,
a 24/7 streaming service for a cappella music. Amanda is also co-owner of Clear Harmonies, a full service studio and management company for a cappella groups. She got her start in contemporary a cappella with Special K, an all-female ensemble at Hamilton College. She has since performed and directed groups around the globe. She is business director and primary arranger of the multiple CARA nominated group Euphonism. She
also founded Snowday, a professional quintet that incorporates contemporary vocal music into education, visiting close to 100 schools each year. She has served in various capacities at the Contemporary A Cappella Society of America (CASA) & turned the Contemporary A Cappella League into its own non-profit organization. Amanda has been a CARA nominator and judge since 2010.
amanda (at) clearharmonies.com