As always, for the New Zealand national convention, BHNZ secures the talents of a world-class quartet. This year Pan Pacific 2023 goes further than that - we have two headline quartets! Both are international quartet competition finalists - Instant Classic winning gold in 2015, and GQ placing 3rd in the Sweet Adelines International Contest in 2020.
Read more about GQ below, and Instant Classic here.
GQ is an a cappella and barbershop quartet from Baltimore, MD. Amanda Sandroni, Ali Hauger, Katie Gillis, and Katie Macdonald are four great friends, singing a variety of styles together, with a passion for creating a truly unique sound.
GQ formed in the Summer of 2011 as an a cappella project at Towson University. Since then, they have competed in various a cappella competitions across the United States – winning the 2013 SingStrong Championship and placing 2nd in the 2013 National Harmony Sweepstakes. On the barbershop scene, they are proud members of Sweet Adelines International – representing as Region 19 Champions, 2013 Rising Star Champions and most recently as 2020 International 3rd Place Bronze Medalists and making history as the first female quartet to medal placing 4th at the 2022 BHS international competition in Charlotte, North Carolina.
GQ has performed all over the United States and Canada, as well as headlining conventions in Germany, Spain, England, and The Netherlands. They have served as guest teaching quartet and clinicians for many Youth Harmony Camps, and are proud to each be involved in arts and education in some capacity for their “day” jobs! GQ arranges many of their own a cappella songs and loves to collaborate with other artists.
While enjoying success in the a cappella barbershop world, they have also made a name for themselves in social media – making the front page of Reddit with a video that now has over 6.7 million hits! They have also been featured on Garrison Keillor’s A Prairie Home Companion twice in 2015.
Amanda Sandroni TENOR
Having spent much of her childhood on a farm, and in 4H showing cows, goats and pigs, her imitations of farm animals are pretty spot-on. In addition to her penchant for carrying around bales of hay, she was also actively involved in chorus and musical theater growing up. Amanda is a recent graduate of Towson University with a Bachelor of Science in Music Education. One of Amanda’s greatest strengths is how she cares about other people, so naturally, her role in GQ tends to be directed towards what we can give back to the community and to others. She also is the most perfect barbershop tenor in the world, who never gets any notes from coaches…. (but we’re not bitter…nope)
Amanda is the vocal music teacher at Chapel Hill Elementary in Baltimore, MD.
Katie Gillis LEAD
Katie G. is a graduate of Towson University with a Bachelor of Science in Vocal Jazz Performance. Throughout high school, Katie was an avid singer, participating in All-County and All-State Choirs as well as local community theater. She was also an accomplished athlete in lacrosse, soccer, and field hockey. While pursuing her degree at Towson, she handpicked Ali, Amanda and Katie Mac to be in a vocal quartet for her Honors capstone project and GQ was born! Katie arranges and composes music for GQ and holds a beautiful artistic vision for the group.
Katie works as a professional singer in the Baltimore/DC area, as well as an organic farmer, and pottery thrower.
Ali Hauger BARITONE
Ali graduated from Towson with an Early Childhood Education degree. As our resident barbershopper, Ali has an impressive rap sheet. She sang with The Dundalk Chorus of SAI Region 19 since 2005, with a total of 16 years as a Sweet Adeline. In 2008 her quartet Whole ‘Lotta Harmony was named Rising Star Champions. They also went on to win the Region 19 competition in 2011. She lived in Orlando and sang with Toast of Tampa for three years, medaling twice with them at SAI International and also performed at Walt Disney world with the Voices of Liberty in the Candlelight Processional.
Ali is currently a kindergarten teacher at Colgate Elementary in Baltimore, Md
Katie Macdonald BASS
Katie Mac grew up listening to the Beatles and to this day swears they were the ones who taught her how to harmonize. Katie has been participating in musicals since middle school and lights up when she is on stage. In late high school and early college, she expanded her musical knowledge in jazz choir, where she met both Katie G. and Amanda! Katie is the administrative member in GQ; she deals with the CD sales and scheduling. Katie is a graduate of Towson University with a Bachelor of Science in Music with a minor in Business.
Katie works in fundraising for the Barbershop Harmony Society.