Eclectic Music Festival the Library Stage | A Trio of Tasty Musical Treats

A feast of tasty musical treats to savor on the Library Carnegie Stage at the Eclectic Music Festival and Arts Crawl, Saturday, April 27

PHOTO: Pat McGowan | News | David Plenn, South Pasadena legend, plays the Library's Carnegie Stage in 2018.

Three generous helpings of spicy, flavorful musical goodness will be served to guests on the Library ‘Carnegie Stage’ Concert for the 11th Annual Eclectic Music Festival on Saturday, April 27.

The highly regarded Carnegie Stage in the South Pasadena Library Community Room located at 1115 El Centro Street has presented more than 40 dynamic performances over the past decade, including a bevy of Grammy winners.

The 2019 Carnegie Stage concert will again utilize the popular recipe.

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Doors will open at 3 pm. No tickets or reservations are necessary, but seating is limited and “festival style” (first come, first seated).

Refreshments will be provided by the South Pasadena Woman’s Club and CDs by the musical artists will be available for purchase. For more information, please call the Library at (626) 403-7350.

4 p.m. – Julia Vari – International recording artist Julia Vari has enchanted audiences around the globe for nearly a decade, including recent performances at Mexico City’s National Auditorium, the CARIFESTA International Festival in Haiti, Clamores Theater in Madrid, National Arts Center in Ottawa, and UCLA’s Semel Auditorium. Vari’s two Jazz/World music album releases, “Adoro” and “Lumea,” both topped the Latin American Jazz/World music charts, allowing Vari to share the stage and collaborate with Grammy award-winning artists Arturo Sandoval, Armando Manzanero, and Francisco Cespedes. In 2018 Julia played a scintillating set of Spanish and English language ballads and torch songs for the Latinx Literary Love-In in the Library Community Room.

PHOTO: South Pasadena Public Library | | Julia Vari

Hailed by the press as possessing “the voice of an angel” (Sleepless in Studio City), “Julia Vari shines whether performing jazz, pop, or various Latin music styles, all of which she can deftly sing in eight different languages.” (San Diego Union-Tribune).Having studied voice and piano at the renowned Eastman School of Music, Julia is equally at home with Jazz, Latin, world rhythms, and classical. Vari, has been featured in the San Diego Union-Tribune, L.A. Weekly, El Pais, and Reforma.

5:15 p.m. – The David Plenn Band will bring back another exciting collection of songs played by a stellar group of musicians. Touches of rock, folk, blues, jazz, and even country run throughout David’s songs which sparkle with his slide guitar playing.

David got his start in the music business when he was signed to A&M Records as a 16 year-old. In the years that followed, his songs appeared on albums that have sold 3 million (Kenny Loggins’ “Nightwatch”), 1.5 million (“Kenny Loggins’ Live!)”, 1 million (“One Moment in Time” featuring Whitney Houston), and a half million (Robert Cray’s “Midnight Stroll”). Popular TV shows also featured his songs (Touched by an Angel, Beverly Hills 90210, Melrose Place, and others). David will be playing two of those songs on the Library Carnegie Stage this year.

PHOTO: Marisa Vasquez | News | David Plenn burning up the electric guitar at the Blue Guitar in South Pasadena

Plenn took a break for 15 years to be a dad and ended up starting a toy store, South Pasadena’s Dinosaur Farm, which has been recognized by Forbes and USA Today as one of the top independent toy stores in the US and by BuzzFeed as one of the top 17 toy stores in the world.  David started writing songs again about 12 years ago, and he’s assembled an all-star band with David Goodstein on drums (Dolly Parton, Joe Perry), Danny McGough on keyboards (Tom Waits, Social Distortion), Lloyd Moffitt on bass (Grant Geissman),Taylor Plenn on saxophones and Tara Austin on vocals. A very special guest will join the band on two songs.

6:30 p.m. – Grammy- winner Luciana Souza & Otmaro Ruiz, a highly distinguished Venezuelan pianist will captivate the Carnegie Stage. Born in Brazil, Luciana grew up in a family of Bossa Nova innovators. As a leader, Luciana has been releasing acclaimed recordings since 2002, including six Grammy-nominated records. Ms. Souza has performed with Herbie Hancock on his “The River—The Joni Letters,” the Grammy-winning Album of the Year for 2007. She has also worked with Paul Simon, James Taylor, Bobby McFerrin, and many others. Entertainment Weekly writes, “her voice traces a landscape of emotion that knows no boundaries.”

PHOTO: South Pasadena Public Library | | Luciana Souza 

Otmaro Ruiz is a pianist, composer, and arranger who began his musical studies at age eight on piano, classical guitar, harmony, and aesthetics. In 1989 Ruiz moved to LA where he finished his academic training at CalArts with a master’s degree in jazz performance in 1993. He began recording with Alex Acuna and later Arturo Sandoval, followed by a world tour supporting Gino Vannelli. Since then he’s transitioned into the new millennium with acoustic piano and electronic keyboard playing with Rock icons Robbie Robertson and Jon Anderson from Yes. In addition, he’s also played with Herb Alpert, Tito Puente, Steve Winwood, and Fusion giant John McLaughlin.

PHOTO: South Pasadena Public Library | | Otmaro Ruiz

Click here for more information about the Eclectic Music Festival 

Free parking is available in the South Pasadena Unified School District lot at 1020 El Centro Street (entrance from Fairview Avenue between El Centro and Mission) and after noon at the Mission Meridian Parking Garage located at 805 Meridian Avenue adjacent to the Metro Gold Line Station, only one block from the Library. Upon request made no later than four business days before the event, the city will provide a reasonable accommodation for a qualified person with a disability to have equal access to the event.

Contact ADA Coordinator and Human Resources Manager Mariam Lee Ko, at (626) 403-7312 or fill out the City’s request form available at and email the form to Human Resources at