Kevin Saftner is taking the expertise he gained as the former general manager/booking agent for the James Street Gastropub and Speakeasy on Pittsburgh’s North Side and parlaying it into a new venture: The Stage at Karma on the South Side. It is located at 1713 E. Carson Street at the former Devils & Dolls nightclub.

“When the James Street Gastropub closed on Nov. 11, 2017, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but I knew I wanted to stay in the music industry in some way,” said Mr. Saftner, who also co-founded the Deutschtown Music Festival. Soon after the James Street Pub closed, he met Mike Papareila, who owns The Stage at Karma. They were introduced by T. J. Harris, who will be DJing at the new club.

Kevin Saftner, general manager of James Street Gastropub & Speakeasy on the North Side

The venue has been renovated to include professional sound and light systems and features two rooms: a barroom with a capacity of 200 people and a showcase room that accommodates 350. Mr. Saftner will be booking live music. “We will work with anyone, local or otherwise.” Among the events planned are Sunday Jazz Jams, Monday Karaoke, Tuesday Open Stage, Wednesday Funk/Soul, Thursday EDM, Friday and Saturday nights live bands followed by DJs.

While there are other music venues on the South Side like the Rex Theater and The Smiling Moose, Mr. Saftner said The Stage at Karma is a bit different. “I’d describe it more as a cultural hub,” said Mr. Saftner.

The Stage at Karma will also offer valet parking.

*We regret to inform that Karma has since closed its doors as of April 2019