Featured Composer: Stephen Magnusson


Winner of the 2013 Melbourne Prize for Most Outstanding Musician, guitarist Stephen Magnusson is considered one of Australia’s most accomplished, versatile and distinct musicians with incredible technique and an astoundingly beautiful tone. After completing his studies at the Victorian College of the Arts, under the supervision of some of Australia’s finest musicians - Tony Gould, Bob Sedergreen and Mike Doyle - Stephen lived and worked in Europe, eventually being appointed as a staff member of The Academy of Contemporary Music (Zurich). On his return to Melbourne in August 2000 he was awarded equal first prize in the National Jazz Award at Wangaratta Jazz and Blues Festival. He has released over 9 records, with his latest – MAGNET – awarded the 2013 Bell Award for Best Australian Contemporary Jazz Album.


Stephen has worked with many artists including Charlie Haden, Meshell Ndegeocello, Ricki Lee Jones, Sinead O’Connor, John Cale, Gurrumul Yunupingu, Paul Grabowsky, Vince Jones, Katie Noonan, Lisa Young, Christine Sullivan, Michelle Nicole, Martin Breeze, The Assumptions Trio, Megan Washington, Paul Kelly, Jim Black, Mike Nock, Barney McAll, Enrico Rava, Arthur Blythe and many others. As a part of the Katie Noonan trio Elixir, the ensemble won the ARIA for Best Jazz Album in 2011. He has also toured Crossing Roper Bar with the Australian Art Orchestra, and conducted workshops in Prato, Italy. Stephen is currently writing for his duo Boundaries with Frank DiSario, and trio MAG featuring DiSario and Dave Beck, while also completing SOM, the second release from MAGNET.

Stephen Magnusson's new work Various (2016) was featured in PLEXUS: Propulsion on 6 December 2016 at the Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre.