School of Music > Community Music > Faculty & Staff > Faculty A-Z > Jaime Cárdenas

Jaime Cárdenas


Teaching Area(s)


Master's Certification DePaul University
MM San Francisco Conservatory

BM Cleveland State University

Born in Punta Arenas, Chile, the capital of the Chilean Patagonia Region, Jaime Cardenas attended the pre-college program at The Chilean University Music Department. He moved to the. U.S. in 2013 to attend the University of Georgia. He received a Bachelor of Music Performance from Cleveland State University in 2018, a Master’s Degree in Music Performance from the San Francisco Conservatory in 2020 and a Post-Master’s Certificate from DePaul University 2022. Jaime also attended the Aspen Music Festival and School for four seasons serving as the Aspen Conducting Academy Timpani fellow in 2019. The same year, he won the Aspen Percussion Solo Competition with his arrangement of “El Gavilán” by Chilean folk artist Violeta Parra for Marimba and Voice.

As a local freelancer, Mr. Cardenas plays with different groups in the area, such as the Madison Symphony, Dubuque Symphony, Illinois Philharmonic, Oistrak Orchestra, NorthBrook Symphony, South Bend Symphony, Rockford Symphony and more.

As a Timpani recording artist, Mr. Cardenas has worked for the label NAXOS on a recording of Mahler’s Symphony Nr. 2 with the Mina Gerais Philharmonic, Brazil. He has also been involved in the Los Angeles recording scene, completing a timpani recording session for the Silent Zoo Studios.

In 2020, Cardenas realized that it was very difficult for many people to afford their own mallet percussion instruments. In an effort to change this, he started a small business with his wife called Mallets For All, which produces affordable, mostly student-models of marimbas and xylophones. Together, in their quest to make percussion more widely-accessible, they have built and sold many artisanal instruments as well as offering rental and repair services.