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The Center for Human Rights and Peace Studies

The Johnny Pacheco Latin Music and Jazz Festival at Lehman College

2024 marks the 14th year of the Johnny Pacheco Latin Music and Jazz Festival at Lehman College. The festival is an annual event offering performance and learning opportunities for talented young musicians in New York City schools and beyond. As a hybrid in-person and online event, the Pacheco Festival continues to build international student and faculty participation.

More than 250 middle school, secondary school, and college student musicians perform at this festival each year.

The Pacheco Festival is a collaboration between the Lehman College Music Department, The Lehman College Multimedia Center and BronxNet Television.

Supported in part by a grant from the Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation.

Community Outreach

The Pacheco Festival serves residents of the Bronx and the greater New York City area. Along with the participation of local student musicians, neighboring elementary, middle and secondary schools are invited to join the live festival audience.

The festival is simulcast live on BronxNet Television ( and streamed worldwide. It is also promoted as part of the Jazz Education Network Virtual Outreach Series ( The live BronxNet broadcast reaches 370,000 homes in the Bronx and receives thousands of views via livestream.

2024 Evening Performances

Wednesday, March 13
7:30 p.m.
Salsa Picante!
Click for details

Thursday, March 14
6:30 p.m.
School Jam
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Friday, March 15
7:30 p.m.
Jazz at Lehman College
Click for details

The extended Bronx and NYC community is welcome to attend all festival events that are free and open to the public.

Virtual Performances and Workshops

As a hybrid event, the Pacheco Festival is available to audiences, clinicians, students, and performers across the globe—from Santiago, Chile, to Hong Kong and San Francisco, to Winnipeg and Montreal, Canada. Most notably, NEA Jazz Masters Clark Terry and Frank Foster have participated in music presentations from their homes via Skype.

Guest Artists

World-class Latin music and jazz artists are invited to perform at the festival each year.

Past Guest Artists include:

Mike Mainieri, Larry Ridley, Andy Gonzalez, Richard Wyands, Nicky Marrero, The Capitol Bones, Terry Silverlight, Will Lee, Barry Miles, Zacchai Curtis, Leslie Lewis and Gerard Hagen, Gary Morgan and Panamericana, The Ethos Percussion Quartet, Richard Boukas and Quarteto Moderno, The Bronx Conexion, Memo Acevedo and Manhattan Bridges, Matt Niess and The Lehman College Faculty Jazz Ensemble.

Pacheco Festival Distinguished Artists

The Pacheco Festival publicly recognizes musicians for their life-long contribution to the music and music education professions. Recipients to date are:

  • 2010/2011: Dr. Johnny Pacheco, Mr. Frank Foster, Dr. Larry Ridley, Mr. Andy Gonzalez
  • 2012: Mr. Nicky Marrero, Mr. Richard Wyands, Mr. Aaron Sachs, Mr. Clark Terry Past Lehman College Jazz Ensemble Directors: Dr. Lyn Christie, Mr. Stanley Cowell, Mr. Jack Cohen, Mr. Bob Stewart, Mr. Armando Rodriguez
  • 2013: Mr. Michael Mainieri, Dr. Bert Konowitz
  • 2014: Mr. Ray Santos, Mr. Memo Acevedo 2015: Mr. Morris "Arnie" Lang, Mr. Ramon Rodriguez, Mr. Lou Marini, Mr. Larry Willis, Mr. Billy Strayhorn (posthumously)
  • 2016: Mr. Wilson "Chembo" Corniel

Pacheco Festival Recognition of Organizations

The Pacheco Festival publicly recognizes organizations for their commitment to music and music education. Recipients to date are:

The CUNY Jazz Festival at The City College of New York

  • Professor Mike Holober, Director

The KoSA International Percussion Workshops

  • Aldo Mazza, Artistic Director
  • Dr. Jolan Kovacs, Co-Founder

The Jazz Education Network Mary Jo Papich, Co-Founder

  • Dr. Lou Fischer, Co-Founder