Hagey Hall swelled with recognizable tunes Sunday, February 18 as a crowd of almost 1,000 attendees packed a sold-out theatre for the 2018 International Championship for Collegiate A Capella (ICCA) Quarterfinals.  10 teams from across southern Ontario performed 12-minute routines for a shot at top title, with Waterloo’s four of five teams taking home a combined seven awards.  First-place winners, In Full Colour, and runner-up group, The Waterboys, will continue to semi-finals in Buffalo next month.

“I feel amazing,” said Yang Chen, Co-Musical Director for In Full Colour.  “It’s nothing but fun and positivity all around. There is so much growing Canadian a cappella talent and this year we are able to share it with our friends and family at Waterloo.”

While the routines take hours of practice each week, Chen, fourth-year systems design engineering student, finds reprieve in the musical outlet.

“It’s just such a fun break,” said Chen.  “We have students from all six undergraduate faculties… it’s exciting to meet people you wouldn’t otherwise.”

While the event marked big wins for participating Waterloo teams, this was the first time a Canadian university ever hosted the event.  Competitors included students from University of Toronto, McMaster University, Wilfrid Laurier University (Waterloo and Brantford campuses) and York University.

“You really felt a sense of community performing with all-Canadian groups,” said Rachel Hickey, a member of Waterloo’s A Cappella community for two years.  “It feels even more special to win so many awards on Canadian soil.  We’re really looking forward to performing alongside teams from the states next month.”

Groups who are successful during next month’s semi-finals will have the chance to advance to finals hosted at the Beacon Theatre on Broadway in New York City. 

Photocredit to Mohammad Protique