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Berkeley Youth Orchestra is made possible through the tireless efforts of our Artistic Director and Orchestra Manager.

Jay Lehmann

Artistic Director & Conductor

Jay grew up in Marin County and now resides in the East Bay. He received a bachelor’s degree and lifetime teaching credential from UC Davis, and a master’s degree in trumpet performance from CSU Hayward. He taught high school for 20 years in Richmond and Danville, and his instrumental performance groups have won awards throughout the state, including two first place performances at the Monterey Jazz Festival. Currently in his 25th year at Laney College, he serves as the Chairman of the Music Department. In addition, Jay is a full professor at the California Jazz Conservatory in Berkeley. He teaches music theory, history, and ear training, and he conducts various instrumental ensembles. Recipient of a Golden Bell Award for Outstanding Teaching in the State of California, Lifetime Achievement Award from the PTA, Laney College Teacher of the Year, and Laney College Outstanding Achievement Award for Teaching, he also serves as the Laney Academic Senate Music Representative. At BYO, Jay develops and oversees our music program, directs the music staff, and serves as our concert conductor. He is also the founder of the Berkeley Youth Chamber Orchestra (BYCO) and the Berkeley Youth Prep Orchestra (BYPO).