Roger Dean (Composer-improviser; keyboards, computer; arts researcher; Founder and Director of LYSIS and austraLYSIS)

"one of the guiding figures in electro-acoustic music in Australia" (Julian Day, New Music Up Late, ABC FM, 20130302)

play roger's miniature, "sounding science"

View an article about his musical activities, or a newspaper comment. Hear his inaugural lecture as a research professor at MARCS Auditory Labs, University of Western Sydney (October 2007). Listen to his polemic on how to establish an Australian cultural funding policy which will treat creative work and performance equitably: a talk at the Currency House series at the Sydney Opera House (2008; also heard on ABC radio in 2009).


Roger's notated compositions / acousmatic works / compositions for improvisers / multimedia work  / free improvisation recordings/ creative work on lp/cd / other commercial recordings / humanities research publications /a selection of improvisers and jazz musicians with whom he has worked



Dean is a composer/improviser, and researcher in music cognition/computation. He founded austraLYSIS, which has performed in 30 countries. His performances on the bass, piano and laptop range from the Academy of Ancient Music to the London Sinfonietta; his improvising collaborations from Ted Curson to Evan Parker. He has extensive experience in contemporary jazz and free improvisation, mainly playing piano and computers, but previously also bass and vibraphone: with Graham Collier Music (1975 until its final recording in 2013), LYSIS and austraLYSIS, the London Jazz Composers' Orchestra, a numerous others from Europe and Australia.  Dean’s work is on 50 commercial cds, and many intermedia and installation pieces (with Keith Armstrong, Will Luers, Hazel Smith and others). His creative work centres on keyboard/ensemble improvisation and computer music composition. These merge in his solo MultiPiano Event (live grand piano, real-time audio processing, generative piano, and electroacoustic sound). His research currently focuses on cognition of music and its computational modelling and generation, in relation to pitch, timbre, rhythm, intensity and affect. He edited the Oxford Handbook of Computer Music (2009), and has written five books on music, particularly improvisation. Currently he is co-editing the Oxford Handbook of Algorithmic Music, with Alex McLean (of Leeds University, UK). He has previously been a research biochemist and molecular cell biologist, as a professor at Brunel University, UK; and as the foundation director of the Heart Research Institute (in Sydney, Australia). From 2002-2007 he was the Vice-Chancellor and President of the University of Canberra, and also commenced his scientific work in music cognition, which he now continues as a research professor at the MARCS Institute, University of Western Sydney.


He is interviewed about music and postmodernism, together with many other Australian composers and improvisers, in David Bennett's Sounding Postmodernism (Australian Music Centre, 2008; pp.186-194).

For more information see the Wikipedia article on him (Roger Dean(musician); or the longer biography on this site.

".... sparks of genius"... (John Shand, Artforce 105, 14; 2000).

BOOKINGS and Enquiries to : austraLYSIS Productions, PO Box 225, Milperra, NSW 2214, Australia. Telephone : + 61481 309612. email :


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