About The Hammer

The Hammer Theatre, named after former San José Mayor Susan Hammer and her husband Phil Hammer, a San José Rep Board Trustee, was completed in 1997 via a collaboration between the San José Redevelopment Agency and San José Repertory Theatre Company. This distinctive theatre offered theatrical productions for over seven years for San José and Bay Area patrons and to national acclaim.

In March 2016, San José State University reopened the Hammer Theatre as a distinctive, high-quality performance venue in the heart of downtown San José. The theatre serves San José’s community and the university through high-quality programming expressive of the unique characteristics and diverse cultures that comprise Silicon Valley.


To reactivate the Hammer Theatre Center, a distinctive, high quality performance venue in downtown San Jose, with dynamic and diversified programming while building a collaborative partnership for Arts, Innovation, and Technology that will express the multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, creative performing arts community of San José and Silicon Valley.


Operated by San José State University, the Hammer Theatre has a three-pronged mission:

  • Serve the San José community by building collaborative partnerships for arts, innovation, and technology plus offering performing arts events or academic lectures that express the multi-cultural, highly creative, and technologically progressive community of San José and Silicon Valley
  • Serve San José State University through offering artistically and educationally excellent programming that showcases the university’s premier performing arts and presents world-class academic programs and lectures
  • Offer a 21st century performing arts center paradigm as the Hammer Theatre offers events across all genres (music, theatre, dance, speakers) within several sub-brands to meet the broad arts and educational appetite of a diverse community


The Hammer Theatre Center is a unique performing arts facility that serves as a nexus between the university, San José, and the Bay Area and local or global talent. We offer innovative programming that reflects Silicon Valley’s culture of creativity, diversity, and technology. Audiences can experience live music, theatre, dance, progressive multimedia performances, National Theatre Live screenings, National Geographic Live lectures, and more.

Hammer Sub-Brands

  • SJSU @ Hammer Logo - Premiere San José State University music, theatre, dance, and guest speaker events
  • Light Action Logo - Live theatre and off-Broadway theatrical productions.
  • Music w/o Borders Logo - Music from all around the world, including jazz, blues, reggae, country, and world music.
  • Art Tech Logo - Performances that connect arts, technology, and/or multi-media.
  • Hammer Speaks Logo - National Geographic Live, Sundance Film Institute, and other educational lectures.
  • Also @ Hammer Logo - Corporate, cultural, or other events that are "also at the hammer."
  • Holidays @ Hammer Logo - Music, dance, and theatrical events related to the holiday season.

Performance & Entertainment Venues

Sobrato Auditorium

Main theatre with 532 seats and excellent sightlines

  • Three seating sections
    1) Orchestra: 158 seats + 8 wheelchair
    2) Paterre: 201 seats
    3) Balcony: 157 seats + 8 wheelchair
  • Large state, including orchestra pit with 41′ Proscenium opening and 34′ Stage depth
  • Orchestra pit can add 12′ depth at center 6′ at sides when used as thrust/apron
  • State-of-the-art acoustic system, Constellation virtual audio shell, and up-to-date stage lighting

Hammer 4

Black box performance space with 150 seats

  • Meeting and reception space
  • Available as rehearsal studio

Curtain Call Cafe Lounge

Ground floor space with a bar for special gathering

Mercury News Lounge

Second floor lounge with a bar for private parties

Rooftop Terrace

A versatile outdoor space with breathtaking sunset reception and parties

Other Facilities

  • Dressing rooms
  • Bar/concessions area
  • 2nd floor lobby
  • Outside balconies.



Hammer Theatre Center, 101 Paseo de San Antonio, San Jose, CA 95113 Located between 2nd and 3rd St. in downtown San Jose.


Convenient parking available @ 2nd & San Carlos Garage $5 flat fee after 6 PM

Public Transit

Accessible by BART and VTA (2nd & Paseo De San Antonio exit is in front of the Hammer Theatre)