UCCA Beijing

UCCA Contemporary Experimental Music Series
Nathaniel Gao Quartet


Performing Arts
Location:  The Alcove

For summer 2019, UCCA invites emerging experimental jazz musicians to present original work in a variety of spaces in UCCA’s newly renovated building. On June 22, UCCA will welcome the Nathaniel Gao Quartet for a free public afternoon performance in UCCA’s Lobby.

Nathaniel Gao is a saxophonist and composer who has been a key contributor to the Beijing jazz scene since 2006. He is joined by guitarist Satoshi Kataoka, Bassist Wang Chenhuai, and drummer Alex Morris as they perform original compositions and works by great composers such as Ornette Coleman and Sun Ra.




Nathaniel Gao (Saxophonist, Composer)

Nathaniel Gao is a saxophonist and composer who has been based in Beijing since 2006. He has been a key contributor to the local jazz scene as both a co-leader of the quintet Red Hand as well as a leader of his own quartet and trio. Additionally, Gao has been active in an eclectic range of other musical projects including Three Sergeants Syndrome, The Beijing City Big Band, Afrokoko Roots and Bu Yiding. He has performed at the Ninegates Jazz Festival, the MIDI Jazz Festival, the Chongqing Jazz Festival, and the Ditan Park Music Festival, Jarasum International Jazz Festival and at major venues in Beijing, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Chengdu, Chongqing and Guangzhou. Gao graduated from UNI in 2006 with BA in music performance and in 2011 completed an MA in jazz performance at the City College of New York.

Satoshi Kataoka (Guitarist, Composer, Arranger)

Satoshi Kataoka is a guitarist, composer and arranger living in New York City. He attended the Jazz Performance program at The City College of New York where he studied with world acknowledged musicians like, John Patittuci, Mike Holober, Scott Reeves and many others. Satoshi has had opportunities to play with some great players such as John McNeil (Horace Silver, Tom Harrell, Billy Hart, Bob Brookmeyer), Joe Martin (Chris Potter, Brad Mehldau, Fred Hersch, Maria Schneider), Jochen Rueckert (Mark Turner, Marc Copland, Pat Metheny, Sam Yahel) and many more. In 2015, he has released his first album, “Fall Into the Place” which consists of all his original pieces from the Surca music. The album recorded with Adam Kolker (Billy Hart, Paul Motian), Pablo Menares (Melissa Aldana’s Crush trio, Claudia Acuna) and Allan Mednard (Kurt Rosenwinkel, Aaron Parks).

He has been actively playing in the city since the college years at the venues such as Iridium, Smalls, Fatcat, Cornelia St Cafe,ShapeShifter Lab and many other places. He also has been invited to play some jazz festivals in China such as Hangzhou jazz festival, and given masterclasses in Beijing, Shanghai. He's been playing in some different groups with musicians such as Allan Mednard, Pablo Menares, Glenn Zaleski (current pianist in Ravi Coltrane’s), Simona Premazzi(current pianist in Greg Osby’s and Jeremy Pelt’) and many more, as well as his own trio, quartet, quintet and larger ensemble.

Alex Morris (Drummer)

Born in 1988, has performed at the Wembley Arena in London, the Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Beijing MasterCard Center, Dizzy's Club Coca Cola at Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York City, Le Trianon Concert Hall in Paris, the Taipei Arena, the Worker's Arena in Beijing, the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing, the Guangzhou International Sports Arena, the Qintai Concert Hall in Wuhan, the Star Hall in Hongkong, Stadium Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur, as well as many other venues throughout Asia, the Caribbean, Europe, Australia, North Africa, and the United States. He has collaborated with the Asian artists Jolin Tsai, Kris Wu, G.E.M., Chiu Pi, Sound Fragment, Han Geng, Ning Jing, Faye Chan of F.I.R., Anson Hu, Laure Shang, Sa Dingding, William Wei, Cui Jian, and Xu Wei, as well as appearing alongside Ray Charles alumnus Marcus Belgrave and the jazz greats Robin Eubanks and Rufus Reid. He has recorded for the television shows "Grammy Salute to China Star", the Chinese equivalent of American Idol, "The Rap of China" and "King Cross". Alex is a graduate of the Oberlin Conservatory of Music where he was awarded a Conservatory Initiative Grant Supporting Imagination and Excellence and the Conservatory Dean’s Scholarship for his studies of Jazz and American classical music.

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