Curators 2017

DIRECTOR: Sebastian Gramss

The 2017. program of SAMUR will be directed by the German composer and double bass player Sebastian Gramss, who has helped shape the residency in cooperation with the Goethe-Institut Chennai and has successfully curated the 1st SAMUR in 2016.

Gramss is a double bass virtuoso and composer of jazz and contemporary music. In 2013 he received the ECHO Jazz award (national instrumentalist of the year).

He studied double bass and composition at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam and at the Cologne University of Music.

Gramss released more than 25 CDs under his name. He’s been an inspiring and innovative presence in the world of jazz with his band UNDERKARL for the past 25 years, and recently with his new trios SLOWFOX (with Hayden Chisholm & Philip Zoubek) and FOSSILE 3 (with Rudi Mahall & Etienne Nillesen).

His bass activities include his solo works (Atopie), a long term bass duo series (started with Stefano Scodanibbio in 2008, and continued with Barre Phillips, Tetsu Saitoh, Mark Dresser, Barry Guy and William Parker in over 50 concerts + recordings), several quartets and the international double bass orchestra BASSMASSE with 13 (and up to 50) bass players.

Gramss has composed for radio drama, movies and theatre and – among others – for choreographer Pina Bausch, and recently with/for the Ensemble Modern.

He teaches at the Cologne University of Music and University of Osnabrück, and gives master classes around the world. Extensive touring with his music has led him to venues and festivals all over the world, including Japan, India, Latin America, Russia, USA, Africa, and Australia.

International cooperations: Marilyn Crispell, Fred Frith, Sidsel Endresen, A. v. Schlippenbach, Tom Cora, Ensemble Modern, N. Wogram, E. Sharp, P. Kowald, Z. Parkins, Brötzmann, J. Tilbury, Conny Bauer…

CURATOR: Roger Hanschel

The 2017. program of SAMUR will be curated by the German composer and saxophone player Roger Hanschel. After beginning his musical education at a young age, Roger Hanschel began to play the saxophone at the age of 11.  Early on he developed a fascination for jazz and improvised music and at 14 founded his first group.

He studied saxophone at the Musihochschule in Cologne, Germany. At this point, original composition became a major emphasis in his work, along with performing on the saxophone. There he founded the group NANA in 1983 with Hans Lüdemann (piano), Rainer Linke (bass), and Klaus Mages (drums). From NANA the group BLAU FRONTAL emerged. This group published 2 CDs, one a trio and one in cooperation with Mark Feldmann (vl)  and Hank Roberts (vcl).

In 1986 he studied at the “School for Fine Arts” in Banff, Canada with Dave Liebmann, Dave Holland, Richie Beirach, and others.

Hanschel is a member of the KÖLNER SAXOPHON MAFIA since 1987.  The ensemble has received four German Record Prizes as well as the SWR (Southern German Radio) Jazz Prize in 1999.  Since 1994 he had a long term collaboration with singer GABRIELE HASLER, and regularly performed live with her.  They recorded 5 CDs together and were the recipients of the Ensemble-competition „Jazz Arts 2003“ prize (Germany).

From 1994 to 1998 he performed in a duo with the Dutch cellist ERNST REIJSEGER. He became a member of the STEFFEN SCHORN SEPTET in 1998 and is now performs with Schorn’s UNIVERSE OF POSSIBILITIES. In 1999 and 2003 he played in the KLAUS KÖNIG ORCHESTRA. In January 1998 he presented his music for saxophone and string quartet with the title “years of the fifth period.”  For this project he collaborated with the FRANKFURT CONTEMPORARY QUARTET.

In 2000, along with Steffen Schorn and Dirk Mündelein, he founded TRIOSPHERE, which released their first CD in 2004 (winner of the German Record Critics‘ Prize).

In 2006 he founded the quartet ROGER HANSCHELS HEAVY ROTATION (with Markus Segschneider, Dietmar Fuhr, and Daniel Schröteler).
Since 2007 he has been performing SOLO CONCERTS throughout Europe and released his first complete solo CD in March 2011.

He has collaborated as a soloist with the NORWEGIAN WIND ENSEMBLE (Norway), the NDR BIG BAND (Germany), and GOTLAND MUSIKEN (Sweden).

In 2013 he was performing and producing his new program „Niederschlagsmengen“ for Saxophone and Stringquaret with the AURYN QUARTET. The CD was released in 2014.

In 2014 he founded the group TRIO BENARES (Deobrat Mishra - Sitar, Prashant Mishra - Tabla). There CD "Assi Ghat" won the "Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik.

Since 2010 he teaches saxophone at the Musikhochschule in Cologne.
He released 38 CD's.


Dr Adam J Greig completed his doctoral research at Lancaster University, UK, where he also received his Bachelors Degree with Honours and Masters with Distinction. As a pianist Adam specialises in early-twentieth-century French repertoire particularly that which surrounds the Les six composers, and has performed as a soloist or accompanist at international conferences including the Royal Music Association Symposium Nostalgia and Innovation in Twentieth-Century French Music.  He has also had the privilege of performing two piano concertos with the Lancaster University Symphony Orchestra, Francis Poulenc’s Piano Concerto No. 1, and Germaine Tailleferre’s Concerto pour piano et 12 instruments. His secondary area of performance is contemporary electro-acoustic performance and has performed at the International Computer Music Conference in Belfast, and the LICA-Mantis Festival, Lancaster, both existing works and premières.

Since 2012 Adam has been the Academic Coordinator of KM Music Conservatory in Chennai, responsible for overseeing and developing the curriculum, teaching practices and activities at the institution. In this role he has been responsible for many of the diverse global interactions of the institution sustaining long-term projects with Middlesex University, London; Berklee College of Music, US; Musicians Institue, US; ROLI, London; and Queensland University of Technology, Aus. At KMMC Adam has directed numerous performances and ensembles, including the Opera-Musical Theatre show Sempre Libera (2016) in Chennai and at NH7 festival in Pune. He also played a lead role in a Tamil comedy film, Mapla Singam, which released in 2016.


James Bunch is a composer, performer, conductor, educator, and concert organizer. His music has written music for a number of ensembles including the Ensemble Paramirabo, Locrian Chamber Players, Ogni Suono, and the University of Illinois Symphony Orchestra among others; and has been performed throughout North and South America, Asia, and Europe. He finished his doctorate in music composition at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2016, with a dissertation on the music of Salvatore Sciarrino.

Since then he has taught at the KM Music Conservatory in Chennai, India, where he leads both the composition department and the Diploma programme. While at KM, James started a new music scratch orchestra called Hundredfoot Road. H.F.R. is a collective of student and faculty performers / composers that focuses on a variety of experimental and DIY projects including electroacoustic works, theatre pieces, live film scores, improvisation, and score-based performances in a broad array of musical styles and genres. The ensemble has performed works by both Dr. Bunch and KM students, but has also brought the music of Phillip Glass, Terry Riley, John Cage, and Olivier Messiaen and others to Chennai audiences.