Born in Caracas Venezuela, Otmaro Ruiz began his musical education at the JuanManuel Olivares Conservatory at the age of eight years old. Included in his studies were Classical Guitar, Theory, Classical Piano, and Classical Organ.

In 1983, Otmaro Ruiz, became part of a small, and elite group of both touring and recording musicians in Venezuela, finding himself in the musical company of Soledad Bravo, Guillermo Davila, and visiting International Jazz and Pop Artists Nat Adderley, Thomas Chapin, Miguel Bose, and many others.

In 1986, Otmaro Ruiz joined of one of the most important TV and Radio production companies: Musica y Letra, joining his partner/mentor Jesus Sanoja, It was this experience that would prove to be one of the most important factors in shaping his development as a Composer, Arranger, and eventually, a Producer.

In 1989, with a partial grant from the Ministry of Culture CONAC, Ruiz moved to Los Angeles, enrolling in California Institute of the Arts, obtaining his Masters in Jazz Performance, and interacting with many visiting Artists; however, it was his association with Drummer/Percussionist Alex Acuna, that would lead him to a select circle of musicians, including Jazz Giants Justo Almario, and Abraham Laboriel. This would prove to be the turning point of his professional career.

Since beginning his professional career in the US, he has toured and recorded with some of the most significant Jazz Artists of our time, including: John McLaughlin, Gino Vannelli, Arturo Sandoval and Dianne Reeves, recording “In the Moment’ – Live in Concert” which was awarded a Grammy. His collaboration with Alex Acuna’s “Acuarelas de Tambores” in the same year also received a Grammy nomination. Voted “Best Pianist of the Year 2008” and “Artist of the New Generation 2008” by the Latin Jazz Corner Magazine, Ruiz is continuously sought after, and has lent his musical talents to virtually every International Jazz Festival, never losing his versatility – his greatest asset, reflecting the love and respect he feels for all styles of music. In 2012, Mr. Ruiz was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Music by Shepherd University (Korea/USA) and his work as Arranger/Producer was recognized by the American Academy of Recording Arts with a Nomination for the Grammy Awards 2016 (Catina DeLuna and LADO B Brazilian Project).

To great critical acclaim, Ruiz released his own “Sojourn” in 2008, a collection of beautifully crafted original works, enlisting the collective talents of Drummer Jimmy Branly, Bassist Carlos del Puerto Jr. and Saxophonist Ben Wendel. His latest project, LADO B has, according to immense volumes of international reviews, elevated the level of Brazilian popular music.

World Tours

Randy Brecker – Bill Evans SoulBop Project, Simon Phillips’ Protocol IV, Billy Cobham Spectrum Tour, Dianne Reeves, John Mc Laughlin, Arturo Sandoval, Tito Puente, Steve Winwood, Gino Vannelli, Tolu, Frank Gambale, Alain Caron, Frank Morgan, ‘Jing Chi’ featuring Jimmy Haslip, Robben Ford, and Vinnie Colaiuta: and many others.

For full list of credits, please visit

“Otmaro Ruiz, who seems capable of adapting to any musical situation, demonstrated once again – as he did last week with Dianne Reeves at the Orange County Performing Arts Center – his remarkably multifaceted skills in a solo filled with roaring multilayered audio textures” Don Heckman, Special to the LA Times 2001

“The keyboardist perfectly captures all the fire and beauty of Latin American rhythms” Maki Music 2005

“The performance of the Ruiz ensemble turned out to be the sort of event that defines the best of what the Da Camera Series is all about – Chamber Music, Jazz in this case, that challenges the intellect, delivered with a passion and intensity to trigger the emotion” Don Heckman, Special to the LA Times, 2001


otmaro ruiz trio @ mr musichead gallery


Mr Musichead Gallery
7420 W. Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90046