The History of The First Edition

Since its inception in 1985, The First Edition has been one of the most advanced and influential show choirs in the nation. It was the first to perform a power ballad in a competition, first to implement a fog wall with an on-stage costume change, make use of a scaffolding set, and hydraulic lift system.


  • 1985 – Lynn Lupold and Kevin Butler form the group
  • 1986 – The First Edition competes for the first time at the Bishop Leurs Invitational and placed 4th
  • 1988 – The First Edition competes at The Bishop Leurs Show Choir competition. At this competition First Edition performed “One Day More” the first power ballad to be performed in competition. First Edition won the best show and best vocal awards.
  • 1989 – Eric Van Cleave takes direction of The First Edition
  • 1992 – The First Edition implements the first fog wall and on stage costume change
  • 1993 – The First Edition combines the use of a hydraulic lift, lighted risers, and fog wall winning the National Showstoppers Invitational
  • 1995 – The First Edition becomes the first show choir to utilize a 7 ft. 10in. tall scaffolding set
  • 1998 – The First Edition performs “The Magic Show” utilizing professional magic tricks on-stage
  • 1999 – Eric Van Cleave directs part time
  • 2000 – John Satterfield takes direction of The First Edition
  • 2001 – The First Edition wins Grand Champion at the Center Grove Competition
  • 2005 – The First Edition brings back it’s scaffolding set, utilizing two 8 ft. tall lighted stairs, two 16 ft. walls, and a 40 ft. long fog wall
  • 2006 – The First Edition is the first show choir to perform on the main stage of the Enchantment of the Seas. Also, Jake Mayer (lead trumpet player) and the FE Tech Crew were asked to perform and help run the professional show that night
  • 2010 – The First Edition wins Grand Champion at the Mundelein (IL) Show Choir Invitational
  • 2010 – David Barnhouse takes direction of The First Edition
  • 2012 – Verda Slinkard takes direction of The First Edition