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41st Annual Mt. Zion Midwest Invitational schedule release

MT. ZION, Ill - A competition that has stood the test of time has released their schedule for the 41st time.

The Mt. Zion Midwest Invitational is slated for January 13-14th, 2023 as its known as one of the hardest tests for show choirs so early in the season. Choirs who go onto to place high in this competition historically go on to have very successful seasons.

This year the Mt. Zion Show Choirs will be hosting under the new rein of former Decatur Elite Energy director, Erik Taylor. After the retirement of long-time director Connie Mulligan back in early August. Read more here:

The competition features a lot of "regulars" who return year after year, mostly those near Mt. Zion, but some as far away as Nebraska and Indiana.

Day 1

Jr. High/Middle School

7:00 pm - El Paso-Gridley "Crescendo" (single-gender)

7:25 pm - Sullivan "Singers, Jr."

7:50 pm - Troy "Tonali-T"

8:15 pm - El Paso-Gridley "Dynamics" (mixed)

8:40 pm - Decatur "Collective Sound"

9:05 pm - Mt. Zion "Sound System" (host performance)

9:30 pm - Middle School Awards

Day 2


8:00 am - Danville "Executives" (male)

8:25 am - Springfield "Scarlet Harmony"

8:50 am - Wheaton Warrenville South "Esprit"

9:15 am - Danville "Contemporaries" (female)

9:40 am - Mt. Zion "You've Got Male" (host performance)


10:15 am - Highland "Dissonance"

10:40 am - Springfield "In-Session"

11:05 am - Alan B. Shepard "Nova"

11:30 am - Herscher "Class Act"

11:55 am - Troy Buchanan "Soundwave"

12:20 pm - Mt. Zion "Les Femmes" (host performance)

Large Mixed

1:30 pm - Sullivan "Singers"

2:00 pm - Glenwood "Titan Fever"

2:30 pm - Danville "Delegation"

3:00 pm - Omaha South "The Ambassadors"

3:45 pm - Columbus East "Center Stage"

4:15 pm - Decatur "Elite Energy"

4:45 pm - Troy Buchanan "Express"

5:15 pm - Wheaton Warrenville South "The Classics"

5:45 pm - Mt. Zion "Swingsations" (host performance)

6:15 pm - Daytime Awards

The competition is set to take on 6 finalist from all divisions from Day 2. Finals plan to begin at 8:00 pm and run all the way to 10:30 pm.

Final Awards are set for 11:00 pm.

Past Results:


GC: Wheaton Warrenville South "The Classics" (BC)

1RU: Troy Buchanan "Express" (BV)

2RU: Decatur "Elite Energy"

3RU: Wheaton Warrenville South "Esprit"

4RU: Peoria Area "Soundwave"

5RU: Columbus East "Center Stage"


GC: Troy Buchanan "Express" (BV, BC)

1RU: Decatur "Elite Energy"

2RU: Glenwood "Titan Fever"

3RU: Chesterton "Sandpipers"

4RU: Peoria Area "Soundwave"

5RU: Lafayette Jefferson "First Edition"


GC: Troy Buchanan "Express"

1RU: Glenwood "Titan Fever" (BC)

2RU: Decatur "Elite Energy" (BV, BB)

3RU: Twinsburg "Great Expectations"

4RU: Bloomington BEAT "Amplitude"

5RU: Sullivan "Singers"


GC: Glenwood "Titan Fever" (BV, BC, BB)

1RU: Wheaton North "Flight"

2RU: Troy Buchanan "Express"

3RU: Decatur "Elite Energy"

4RU: Chesterton "Sandpipers"

5RU: Troy Buchanan "Soundwave"


GC: Glenwood "Titan Fever" (BV, BC, BB)

1RU: Troy Buchanan "Express"

2RU: Waubonsie Valley "Sound Check"

3RU: Decatur "Elite Energy" (BV, BB)

4RU: Twinsburg "Great Expectations"

5RU: Sullivan "Singers"

Competition Notes:

Judging Panel: Lexie Robson-Buglewicz, Allen Chapman, Bradley Gardner, Eric J. Hays Jr, Marty Lindvahl, Sam Mulligan (critique), Grace Pacheco (critique), Cyndi Johnson (solo).

  • Wheaton Warrenville South "The Classics" (defending champions)

- Since 2008, "The Classics" have never received lower than 3rd place at this competition, winning 3 out of the 8 times, including last years victory.

- The "Classics" are 1-6 against Glenwood "Titan Fever" All-Time. Their one placement above them came in 2011 at Mt. Zion.

- The "Classics" are 7-2 against Troy Buchanan "Express" All-Time. The last time Troy bested Wheaton South was in 2017 at Mt. Zion.

- The "Classics" are 8-1 against Decatur All-Time.

  • Troy Buchanan "Express"

- After their 2nd place finish at Mt. Zion last year, Troy went on to win 3-contests in a row sweeping them. They finished their season with a 4th place finish at HOA Orlando.

- Troy has been attending this competition since 2006 and their results go as followed: 2006 (4th), 2007 (4th), 2008 (5th), 2009 (4th), 2011 (6th), 2013 (NP), 2017 (2nd), 2018 (2nd), 2019 (3rd), 2020 (1st), 2021 (1st sweep), 2022 (2nd BV).

- "Express" is 2-7 against Wheaton South All-Time. The last time Troy bested Wheaton South was in 2017 at Mt. Zion.

- "Express" is 4-8 against Glenwood "Titan Fever" All Time. All of Troy's placements over Glenwood came in 2020 & 2021.

- "Express" is 9-3 against Decatur "Elite Energy" All Time.

  • Glenwood "Titan Fever"

- After a year off, "Titan Fever" returns to a competition that they know very well.

- Glenwood had been attending this competition since 2011 and their results go as followed: 2011 (4th), 2012 (6th), 2014 (1st BC), 2015 (1st BV BC), 2016 (2nd BC), 2017 (1st sweep), 2018 (1st sweep), 2019 (1st sweep), 2020 (2nd BC), 2021 (3rd).

- Glenwood attended this competition for 8 straight years (2014-21). In that time frame they have 5 wins, 4 best vocal awards, and 7 best choreo awards without finishing below 3rd.

- "Titan Fever" is 6-1 against Wheaton South All-Time.

- "Titan Fever" is 8-4 against Troy Buchanan All-Time.

- "Titan Fever" is 12-3 against Decatur All-Time.

- "Titan Fever" is 7-3 against Danville All-Time.

- "Titan Fever" is 15-1 against Sullivan All-Time. Sullivan's one placement above Glenwood came in 2008.

  • Decatur "Elite Energy"

- With Erik Taylor now directing Mt. Zion, this will be Decatur's first year of competition under a new director since 2016.

- Decatur "Elite Energy's" first competition ever came in 2013 at Mt. Zion.

- Since the creation of "Elite Energy" in 2013 they have never missed an Mt. Zion competiton. Their results go as followed: 2013 (5th), 2014 (4th), 2015 (5th), 2016 (5th), 2017 (6th), 2018 (4th), 2019 (4th) 2020 (3rd BV BB), 2021 (2nd), 2022 (3rd).

- "Elite Energy" is 1-8 against Wheaton South All-Time. Their one placement over them was in 2017 at Glenwood.

- "Elite Energy" is 3-9 against Troy Buchanan All-Time.

- "Elite Energy" is 3-12 against Glenwood All-Time. Decatur placed higher than Glenwood last year at Danville.

- "Elite Energy" is 8-3 against Danville All-Time.

"Elite Energy" is 13-2 against Sullivan All-Time. The last time Sullivan placed higher than Decatur was in 2015 at Mt. Zion.

  • Danville "Delegation"

- When the Danville show choir program was created in 1994, the first competition that they attended was Mt. Zion.

- Danville has attended this competition 10 times throughout its history. They have only made finals twice. In 2013 they were award with 6th place, and in 2016 4th place.

- "Delegation" is 0-3 against Wheaton South All-Time.

- "Delegation" is 1-6 against Troy Buchanan All-Time. That one time came in 2015 at El Paso.

- "Delegation" is 3-7 against Glenwood All-Time.

- "Delegation" is 3-8 against Decatur All-Time.

- "Delegation" is 8-11 against Sullivan All-Time.

  • Sullivan "Singers"

- When the Sullivan "Singers" was created in 1984, the first competition they attended was Mt. Zion.

- Their results at this competition go as followed: 1984 (NP), 1985 (NP), 1986 (1st BC), 1987 (1st), 1988 (1st), 1989 (1st BC), 1991 (2nd), 1994 (NP), 1995 (5th), 2000 (5th), 2003 (3rd), 2004 (5th), 2005 (4th), 2006 (5th), 2007 (3rd), 2008 (4th), 2009 (5th), 2010 (5th), 2011 (NP), 2012 (NP), 2013 (NP), 2014 (5th), 2015 (4th), 2016 (NP), 2018 (6th), 2019 (NP), 2020 (6th), 2021 (NP).

- Sullivan has competed at this competition 28 times and have received: 4 wins, 2 best choreo awards, 1 2nd place finish, 2 3rd place finishes, 3 4th place finishes, 7 5th place finishes, 2 6th place finishes, and there are 9 instances where they did not place.

- "Singers" are 0-7 against Wheaton South All-Time.

- "Singers" are 5-9 against Troy Buchanan All-Time. Last time they placed higher than Troy was in 2009 at Edgewood.

- "Singers" are 1-15 against Glenwood All-Time. The one placement higher came in 2008.

- "Singers" are 2-13 against Decatur All-Time. The last time Sullivan placed higher than Decatur was in 2015 at Mt. Zion.

- "Singers" are 11-8 against Danville All-Time. Sullivan placed higher than Danville at Manteno last year.

  • Omaha South "The Ambassadors"

- The first and only time Omaha South has attended the Mt. Zion Midwest Invitational was in 2020. Where they failed to make finals.

  • Columbus East "Center Stage"

- Columbus East's first time attending Mt. Zion was in 2021. They then returned for a consecutive year in 2022.

- Columbus East received 3rd in the prep division in 2021, and 6th in the Large Mixed division in 2022.

- Columbus East does not have much a connection to Mt. Zion, but their former choreographer Randall Lanoue has been a judge at this competition numerous of times. Also when he was the director for Twinsburg "Great Expectations" they would often make the trip to central Illinois.

- Glenwood "Titan Fever's" current director, Nick Brockamp, use to be the director for Columbus East for the 2018-19 seasons.

  • Wheaton Warrenville South "Esprit" (Single-Gender)

- Wheaton South's "Esprit" first ever known placement was 3rd in the single gender division back in 2008.

- "Esprit" has been known as one of the strongest women's groups in the nation. Recently they are always seen sneaking into finals beating out large mixed groups.

- "Esprit's" résumé at Mt. Zion:

2008 3rd in Single-Gender, 2011 2nd in Single-Gender, 2013 2nd in Single Gender, 2015 1st in Single-Gender (BV BC), 2017 1st in Single Gender (BV, BC), 2022 1st in Single Gender & 4th Overall.

  • Troy Buchanan "Soundwave" (Prep)

- Troy Buchanan "Soundwave" historically has had alot of succes at Mt. Zion. Winning multiple Prep Group division titles, and making finals on various occasions.

- "Soundwave" has a total of 10 Prep Division wins at Mt. Zion with 2 appearances in finals

- "Soundwave" has one every caption in the Prep Division accept Best Choreo in 2020 & 2022.

- "Soundwaves" results at Mt. Zion go as followed:

2006 1st in Prep (BV BC), 2007 Placement Unknown, 2008 1st in Prep (BV BC), 2011 1st in Prep & 5th Overall, 2013 1st in Prep (BV BC), 2017 1st in Prep (BV BC) 2018 1st in Prep (BV BC), 2019 1st in Prep (BV BC) & 6th Overall, 2020 1st in Prep (BV), 1st in Prep (BV BC), 2022 1st in Prep (BV),

Best of luck to all competing and hosting this competition!

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