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Bay Area music lovers can chill out this holiday season with San José State University Jazz Orchestra’s Cool Yule, a lively concert of holiday classics with a jazzy swing at the Hammer Theatre Center.

Directed by Dr. Aaron Lington, this annual tradition features top SJSU music majors performing yuletide favorites with a cool twist. As a special treat, opening the concert is the Leigh 'Lil Band from Leigh High School, directed by Alexander Christensen.

Grammy Award-winning baritone saxophonist and composer Aaron Joseph Lington received his BM from the University of Houston, Moores  School of Music, and both his MM and DMA from the University of North Texas. His credits include collaborations with the SF Symphony, Maynard Ferguson, the Count Basie Orchestra, Bo Diddley, Randy Brecker, Tommy Igoe, Pacific Mambo Orchestra, and others. He has won awards from Downbeat Magazine, ASCAP, and was the 2003 recipient of the  Sammy Nestico Award. He was named the 2011 “Jazz Educator of the Year” by the California Music Educators Association, and has been recognized multiple times in both the Downbeat Magazine Critics and Readers Poll. In 2015 he was named as a Silicon Valley Artist Laureate. The San José Mercury News praises Dr. Lington’s playing  as “revelatory…he obviously relishes the beautiful, blustery bark of his instrument…” Dr. Lington is Coordinator of Jazz Studies at San José State University.

The San José State University Jazz Orchestra provides students with an opportunity to perform traditional and contemporary repertoire from an array of composers spanning over 50 years of jazz history. Activate hails, “SJSU Jazz Orchestra knows a few numbers of their own. This diverse group of music majors are well versed in diverse styles- from classical to Afro-Latin jazz.” Students are selected for this ensemble by audition only.    

Sponsored by the College of Humanities and the Arts Artistic Excellence Programming Grant.


For tickets, click the link below:

Event Details

  • Farid Alizada
  • Brooke Cimino
  • Noah Hunter Jones

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