CMC Sessions: Traditions Moving Forward with Omar Ledezma Jr.

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Free online music workshops exploring musical traditions in flux.

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CMC Sessions: Traditions Moving Forward

Make musical discoveries with faculty from Community Music Center as they explore their methods, approaches, and creative practices in adapting musical traditions to inspire and guide the musicians of tomorrow. CMC Sessions: Traditions Moving Forward showcases the talents of faculty from the CMC Cultural Traditions and Piano Departments who represent diverse classical and non-classical traditions in workshops and presentations. The online workshops will use video, audio, and lecture-demonstrations to illustrate the faculty members' influences and the musical education that shaped them, highlighting how their traditions impact their teaching and performing at CMC. Their personal stories illustrate the breadth of talent and creativity in CMC's faculty.

Meet these talented and inspiring faculty:

Omar Ledezma Jr., The Music of Pacific Mambo Orchestra: A Percussionist’s Perspective

February 24, 2022 at 7pm (PT)

A first-ever inside look at the music of the Bay Area’s Grammy award-winning big band, the Pacific Mambo Orchestra, from the percussionist’s perspective. On September 4, 2010, percussionist and singer Omar Ledezma Jr. joined the newest Latin project in San Francisco, which consisted of a 19-piece mambo-style big band. Since then, the band has produced three albums. Their first self-titled album won a Grammy award for “Best Tropical Latin Album” in 2013, and has toured nationally and internationally with great success. Omar will discuss how the orquesta developed into one of the strongest rhythm sections in the Bay Area. Original footage, pictures, and charts will be used in reviewing 12 years of a historical musical journey!

This event will be conducted online via video conferencing. RSVP to receive the link to join, emailed prior to the start of the discussion.

People who are interested in this workshop can dive deeper by exploring private lessons and group classes and ensembles.


From Caracas, Venezuela, Grammy award-winning singer and percussionist Omar Ledezma Jr. has been playing professionally since the age of 15. In 1995 he graduated from one of the most prestigious law schools in Caracas. In 1998, Omar packed one bag and one drum and moved to Boston after making a passionate commitment to study at the Berklee College of Music. After graduating in 2005, he moved to the Bay Area, where today he teaches at the Community Music Center. Omar has played, recorded, and toured with local and international artists and founded a group dedicated to the cajón, a wooden box percussion instrument. The Ka-Hon Ensemble is one of the biggest stars of the Adventures In Music program of the San Francisco Symphony. In 2013, he won a Grammy with the now worldwide-acclaimed Pacific Mambo Orchestra. Omar is also a music accompanist for the San Francisco Ballet Dance In Schools and Communities (DISC) education program and is an exclusive artist with Pearl Percussion, Pinchclip, ELH Cowbells, Kandu Cajons, Vater, and Soultone Cymbals.

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We believe in the power of music to connect people, celebrate cultures and transform lives. Community Music Center (CMC) is a cornerstone San Francisco cultural institution and a vital hub for music education and performance anchored in the Mission District. We envision students and faculty who are engaged and fulfilled in making music together, and audiences who are energized by their experiences. Inspired by their training, our students are empowered to find their own voice, develop lasting relationships, embrace learning, and give back to their communities.

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