Pianist, Composer and “Steinway Artist,” Michael Jefry Stevens has been active on the international jazz scene for the past four decades. He has composed over 400 works for both large and small ensembles.
Michael has released over 100 CDs featuring his own music and has performed and recorded extensively with many of the top names in Jazz, including Dave Liebman, Oliver Lake, Dave Douglas, Leo Smith, Matt Wilson, Han Bennink, Mark Feldman, Steve Wilson, Walt Weiskopf, Valerie Ponomarev, Cecil Bridgewater, Jeanne Lee, Dakota Staton, Pheeroan AkLaff, Charles Moffett Sr., George Schuller, Dame Evelyn Glennie and many others. In 2016, Michael was voted “Best Composer of WNC” by the Mountain Xpress. In 2017 he received a Regional Project Artist Grant from the Toe River Arts Council. In 2021 he received a $10,000 Doris Duke Foundation Performing Artist Recovery Fund Grant administered by the New York Community Trust Fund and grants from the North Carolina Arts Council and Buncombe County’s Mountain Bizworks. He received his Master of Arts degree in Jazz Performance from Queens College (CCNY).
He was the “Margaret Lee Crofts Fellow” for 2000-2001 at the MacDowell Colony, and was a Centrum Arts composer fellow (2004). Stevens was artist in residence for at EMU Conservatory in La Plata, Argentina between 2005-2010, and has taught master classes at the Royal Academy of Music in Denmark, Sibelius Academy in Finland, University of Michigan, Indiana University, and many other educational institutions in Europe, Latin America and North America. He currently teaches jazz piano and jazz theory at ETSU.