Martin Speake International Quartet

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Martin Speake International Quartet

Fri 04 03 2022 @ 8:00 pm - 10:45 pm

Martin Speake International Quartet

At Crookes Social Club, 8-10.45 pm

Martin Speake: alto sax
Hans Koller: piano
Anders Christensen: bass
Anders Mogensen: drums

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Award winning saxophonist Martin Speake, one of our most fluent and creative musicians and composers, returns with another quartet of top international jazz musicians. The band, known as ‘Universal Connection’, features acclaimed pianist and arranger Hans Koller, perhaps best known for his ambitious work with large ensembles, but who is equally at home in a trio or quartet setting. They are backed by the excellent Danish rhythm section of bassist Anders Christensen and drummer Anders Mogensen. Expect intelligent, searching modern jazz underpinned by lyricism and the subtlety of both the compositions and the improvised melodies.

Martin’s 2020 tour with his previous international quartet is the subject of a documentary film ‘A Jump Into The Void’ featuring brief footage of their gig at Crookes. See the Video Links below.,

Martin Speake has been at the forefront of the UK jazz scene since the mid 80’s when he first came to prominence as a member of the all-saxophone quartet Itchy Fingers with whom he toured all over the world. He left the group to pursue his many and diverse projects as a composer and improviser. He has worked with a wide range of artists and musicians including Loose Tubes, Stan Tracey, Django Bates, Style Council and Airto Moreira. More recently Martin teamed up with former pianist of The Bad Plus, Ethan Iverson, with whom he toured extensively over the past few years, including two great gigs at Crookes Social Club. The 2020 gig at Crookes is featured in a recently released documentary about the band’s tour

He has recorded 23 albums under his own name, including the internationally acclaimed ECM release ‘Change Of Heart’ with Paul Motian, Bobo Stenson and Mick Hutton and ‘Intention’ (Ubuntu Records) with Ethan Iverson, Fred Thomas and James Maddren. This new quartet recorded an album in early 2020, entitled ‘Universal Language’.

“A saxophonist with an unusual turn of phrase, a persuasively gentle sound … Martin Speake is not just a distinctive improviser but a striking composer too” –  John Fordham, The Guardian

Hans Koller came to England to Middlesex University where he majored in composition. He played in bands with Stan Sulzman and Chris Cheek and went on to form his own group, ‘Neverland’ which was augmented into a nine-piece for his début album ‘Magic Mountain’ (1997) which established him as one of the leading new UK jazz composers. Hans has worked in large groups with Evan Parker, Kenny Wheeler and Bob Brookmeyer; performed and recorded with the NDR Big Band; played in groups led by Mike Gibbs, with Steve Swallow, Bill Frisell and Adam Nussbaum; and with Phil Woods and Dave Liebman, Koller’s most ambitious work, his 2016 triple vinyl release ‘Retrospection’ brought together over 30 of the world’s leading jazz musicians, including Steve Swallow, Jakob Bro and the NDR Bigband. As a pianist Hans draws on influences from across the jazz spectrum, from Bill Evans through Monk and Herbie Nichols.

“A force to be reckoned with on the British scene … his approach to the interplay of the historical and the contemporary is as open-minded as it is creative…” – Michael Tucker, Jazz Journal

Bassist Anders Christensen made a name for himself on the Danish and international jazz scene with the Jakob Bro trio, with guitarist Jakob and drummer Jacob Høyer. Anders also played with Polish trumpeter Tomasz Stanko’s quintet, with Jakob Dinesen’s trio and was previously a member of drummer Paul Motian’s ensemble. He has played concerts with Tom Harrell, Joe Lovano, Lee Kontiz and others. In 2009 he released the first album in his own Anders Christensen trio, ‘Dear Someone’.

For more than two decades, drummer Anders Mogensen has been one of the most sought after musicians on the Danish as well as the International Jazz scene. He has been a member of many ground-breaking bands and has toured and recorded with Jazz Greats such as: Bob Berg, David Liebman, Steve Swallow, Marc Johnson, Brecker Brothers and Django Bates. Anders holds a position as Associated Professor and head of the Jazz Department at Carl Nielsen Academy of Music, Odense.

Video Links

Ticket Prices

Full – £16
Over 60s, disabled, unemployed – £14
Student with NUS card – £9
15 – 17 year olds – £4
Under 15s – Free

We encourage you to book tickets online in advance, to avoid missing out and to make life easier and safer for our Door Team.  It will be possible to pay for entry at the door (preferably by contactless payment) if seats are available.

Advance tickets available from


Fri 04 03 2022
8:00 pm - 10:45 pm
Event Category:


Sheffield Jazz


Crookes Social Club
Mulehouse Road, Sheffield, S10 1TD + Google Map
0114 266 0114