Bay Area Music Groups

The Bay Area is home to literally hundreds of classical music organizations, from community choruses to world-renowned orchestras, opera companies and chamber ensembles. This listing provides all the vital statistics for Bay Area music groups, as well as a summary of what they do best. Search by type of organization or alphabetically. Note to classical music groups: If your organization is not listed here or there is an error in your listing, please email [email protected].

J2Sonoma Music Productions

Founded: 2013
Artistic Director: John Partridge
Where to hear them: Sonoma Community Center


Jacaranda Music produces a series of classical music adventures designed to awaken curiosity and discovery. Based in Santa Monica since 2003, Jacaranda was immediately hailed by the LA Weekly as “the right music in the right place at the right time.” More than a decade later, LA Weekly named Jacaranda Best Contemporary Classical Series in 2016: “Wonderfully un-stodgy curation by Jacaranda founders Patrick Scott and Mark Alan Hilt and performances by acclaimed and expert musicians make for ear-cleansing dives into bracingly new music composed largely by living composers, as well as unplayed-to-death music of the past century.”

Founded: 2003
Artistic Director: Patrick Scott

Jack Curtis Dubowsky Ensemble

About Jack Curtis Dubowsky Ensemble

A team of top players led by composer and conductor Jack Curtis Dubowsky, the Jack Curtis Dubowsky Ensemble combines intricately composed material and structured improvisation. The ensemble has released four albums and has performed at venues nationwide including The Downtown Independent (Los Angeles), The Art Theatre (Long Beach, CA), The Tank (NYC), Meridian Gallery (SF), AS220 (Providence, RI), The Frequency (Madison WI), and The Lilypad (Cambridge, MA).

The Ensemble sparks new life to classic silent films with original scores for Nosferatu, The Golem, The Phantom Carriage, Sunrise, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, The Black Pirate, and The Mark of Zorro, for which they released a soundtrack album ZORRO in 2017.   

About Jack Curtis Dubowsky

Jack Curtis Dubowsky is a composer, music editor, and author. Major works include an oratory with orchestra, Eisenhower Farewell Address (2008) and Harvey Milk: A Cantata (2012), which has been performed by university, high school, and community choruses nationally. Dubowsky has scored numerous films and documentaries, including Redwoods, Rock Haven, That Man: Peter Berlin, I Always Said Yes, and Steven Arnold: Heavenly Bodies. His books include Intersecting Film, Music, and Queerness (2016) and Easy Listening and Film Scoring: 1948-1978 which is forthcoming on Routledge. Dubowsky is a member of the Television Academy, the Recording Academy, and the Motion Picture Editors Guild.

Founded: 2008
Artistic Director: Jack Curtis Dubowsky
Where to hear them:

JACK Quartet

Hailed by The New York Times as the “nation’s most important quartet”, the JACK Quartet is one of the most acclaimed, renowned, and respected groups performing today. JACK has maintained an unwavering commitment to their mission of performing and commissioning new works, giving voice to underheard composers, and cultivating an ever-greater sense of openness toward contemporary classical music.

James Toland Vocal Arts

Founded: 2013
Artistic Director: James Toland

Japanese American Museum of San Jose

Japanese American history in San Jose and the surrounding environs.

Founded: 1987

Japanese American Museum of San Jose

Japanese American history in San Jose and the surrounding environs.

Founded: 1987

Japanese Choral Federation of Northern California

This is an association of the six Japanese chorus groups in SF Bay Area and Sacramento.

Where to hear them: Around the Bay Area

Japanese Music Institute

Founded: 1981
Artistic Director: Masayuki Koga

Jarvis Conservatory

Utilizing a grant from the Jarvis family the Conservatory provides training and support for artists. The Conservatory is dedicated to serious art forms not often available in other places, and at the same time, art forms relating to the large Hispanic community of Napa.

Founded: 1995
Artistic Director: William Jarvis
Where to hear them: The Jarvis Conservatory

Jazz at the Lesher Center

The Diablo Regional Arts Association is committed to elevating the quality and professionalism of performing arts in Contra Costa County. Its support of drama, classical music, dance, and musical theater at the Lesher Center has enriched the theater-going experience in the region. But missing from the area’s performing arts scene is jazz as performed by instrumentalists and vocalists of the top rank. Now, in its debut as a presenter, DRAA is producing a concert series featuring internationally acclaimed jazz artists.

Artistic Director: Daniel Levenstein
Where to hear them: Margaret Lesher Theatre, Walnut Creek

Jazz in the Neighborhood

Founded: 2012
Artistic Director: Mario Guarneri
Where to hear them: in neighborhood venues around the Bay Area

Jazz Voices of Poetry