Orquesta Aragón

San Francisco International Arts Festival, with the School of Music & Dance and 
the Department of Latina/o Studies of San Francisco State University present

Orquesta Aragón

A Cuban Musical Celebration

Also featuring the Afro-Cuban Ensemble of SFSU & the City College of
San Francisco Charanga Orchestra

Click hear for their Video clip

“Orquesta Aragón still puts on an energetic live show, intent on making the audiences stand-up and scream.” — New York Times

“From first to last, Aragon gave the Carnegie Hall audience an impeccable display of charanga feeling and deep cha-cha grooves. In technique and soul, their playing and singing were an ideal representation of Cuban music.” — Rhythm Magazine



McKenna Hall, San Francisco State University,

1600 Holloway Road, San Francisco, CA 94132

Tickets & Dates

Sunday, April 20, 2014 at 6:00pm

Reserved Seating: $40 - $60

$5 Discount for Full Time Students & Senior Tickets

Group Discounts: (415) 399-9554, Box Office Phone: (415) 338-2467 (Wed - Fri. Noon - 4:00pm) or call 415-399-9554 outside of box office hours.

The San Francisco International Arts Festival (SFIAF) is joining with the School of Music & Dance at San Francisco State University to present an exclusive Bay Area engagement with the legendary Cuban music ensemble Orquesta Aragón from Havana. Aragón brings the musical genius of generations of musicians to the Bay Area dedicated to sharing their rich musical heritage with both young and old music fans throughout the world.

Orquesta Aragón has been a cornerstone of Cuban culture for seven decades, prospering in the heady, profligate days before Fidel Castro came to power and then thriving after the revolution transformed the country’s music industry. Through all the personnel, stylistic and political changes, Aragón has kept its focus, spreading irresistible Cuban rhythms around the world. Always looking to make dancers happy, the band has cultivated a highly flexible approach that allows it to keep up with changing fashions while staying true to its basic sound.
Led by accomplished violinist and musical director Rafael Lay, Jr. and with a creative range from danzon, son, cha-cha-chá, and more, Orquesta Aragón’s classic charanga form their distinctive sound based on traditional son with its African rhythm section and Spanish melodies, over which they added flutes and violins.
The importance of Orquesta Aragón to Cuban Music is similar to that of Duke Ellington or Count Basie to American Jazz. Orquesta Aragón's extraordinary adventure began in September 1939 when bass player Orestes Aragón Cantero brought his small charanga to Cienfuegos for their debut. This Charanga group has gone on to become one of Cuba’s most treasured cultural entities with a reputation as one of the foremost interpreters of classic Cuban popular songs.
Known for such hits as “El Bodeguero,” “La Gloria Eres Tu,” and “Calculadora,” the group has performed in prestigious venues all around the world – Carnegie Hall in New York, Olympia Theatre in Paris, and Tchaikovsky’s Theatre of Russia. They can be heard live regularly on Radio Progreso in Havana (making their debut on the station in 1955) and have recorded over 100 albums.
Sponsored by 

Donate to the SF State founded and run Clinica Martin Baró or the following Mission based non-profits and good causes when you buy your tickets for Orquesta Aragón: CARNAVAL, PODER, CARECEN, SF Housing Rights Committee, La Bohemia Productions, Our-Mission-No-Evictions or Dolores Street Community Services.
Once you have purchased your tickets, you will be presented with a list of donation options. All you need to do is click on one of the boxes listed to donate a penny to the good cause of your choice and SFIAF will donate $5 from the price of each ticket that you purchased for Orquesta Aragón. We are asking for a penny because we need a way to link your desire to donate with your ticket order. You can, of course, donate more money to any of the organizations you would like to support by using the same donation button.

You can also purchase tickets over the phone at 415-338-2467 and ask for the donation option.