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Hannah Gadsby Is the Next Rolling Stone AU/NZ Cover Star

The groundbreaking Australian comedian will grace our March-May issue cover, which hits newsstands this week

Hannah Gadsby

Charlie Ashfield

Hannah Gadsby has been unveiled as the next Rolling Stone AU/NZ cover star.

The groundbreaking Australian comedian will grace our March-May issue cover, which hits newsstands in Australia and New Zealand from Monday, March 18th.

Gadsby, who won Best Comedy Special at the 2024 Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards (AACTAs), granted Rolling Stone AU/NZ unprecedented access in one of their most revealing interviews to date.

The cover story, written by Rolling Stone contributor Jenny Valentish, chronicles Gadsby’s story as they address the Netflix drama off the back of their viral but polarising 2018 special Nanette. The show was intended as a farewell to the industry that began a transformative and triumphant new era spawning two further specials, a Ted Talk, a Variety cover, and a memoir.

The interview also sees Gadsby delve into their early life and career, experiences with the damage that gay law reform and the same-sex marriage bill would inflict, as well as their strong dislike of gatekeepers in the comedy industry and beyond.

“To my delight, the Hannah I interviewed was every bit as fiery and nimble a commentator on the fly as they are on stage,” Valentish says. “They were generous enough to take on any topic, no matter how controversial or – I’m sure, on occasion – deeply personal. A new era of Gadsby is about to begin and it was a pleasure to get an early glimpse behind the curtain.”

Gadsby’s cover story follows their inclusion as one of 50 of the most iconic stars from across Australia and Aotearoa in Rolling Stone AU/NZ‘s special ‘Icons Issue’ last year.

Gadsby adds: “It was never my dream to be on Rolling Stone magazine, certainly not the cover. Because why would you bother dreaming about something that’s highly unlikely?”

Hannah Gadsby Rolling Stone AU/NZ cover

Hannah Gadsby, photographed on 9 January 2024 at Tamale Studios, Melbourne, by Charlie Ashfield (@igotshotbycharlie). Creative Director Katie Taylor (@ katie.taylor____) Stylist: Benjamin Bates (@thestylistben) HMUA: Nadine Muller (@nadinemullermakeup) Photography Assistant: Renee Coster (@wrencoster) BTS: Alex Carpi (@magicarpi_) Studios: Tamale Studios (@tamale_studios) Wearing: @eyest.au

According to photographer Charlie Ashfield, Gadsby’s cover, which you can see above, adds “an element of mystery and intrigue, using lots of shadow and cool toned colours to exaggerate Hannah’s silhouette and add an almost villainous vibe, using the styling to further exaggerate this concept and make it feel elevated and slick.”

Rolling Stone AU/NZ Editor-in-Chief, Poppy Reid, is thrilled about having Gadsby grace the cover. “This is our first non-music cover since The Brag Media brought Rolling Stone back to Australia, so it was important that the person we chose truly captured a moment in culture,” Reid says.

“Hannah has been one of the most impactful Australian comedians of recent years, thrilling audiences with their discordant take on stand-up both here and overseas. We also wanted to show Hannah in a way that hadn’t been seen before, and our photographer and team did incredible work to cast them as the quintessential anti-hero in this amazing shoot.”

Alongside Gadsby’s cover story, the March-May magazine also includes a deep dive into why Australian musicians are embracing sustainability, feature articles on video game music, AI and the threat it poses to human creativity, and the latest in the hunt for Tupac’s killer. 

Readers can also enjoy a breakdown of why young female fandom is so divisive, an interview with the star of Killers of the Flower Moon, Lily Gladstone, as well as reviews of the latest albums by L.A.B, Royel Otis, Kita Alexander, Peter Garrett, Jessica Mauboy, and more.

Alongside the March-May magazine cover, Rolling Stone AU/NZ has revealed its new print editor, music and entertainment journalist James Jennings. Having written for the previous incarnation of Rolling Stone for 10 years, Jennings is a former editor of Empire magazine and has written for titles and clients including NME, SBS, and many more. He currently writes gig reviews and music artist interviews for The Sydney Morning Herald.

Rolling Stone is unquestionably the world’s most iconic music title, so to be appointed print editor for Rolling Stone AU/NZ is an incredible honour,” says Jennings. “Under the leadership of Editor-In-Chief Poppy Reid, the Rolling Stone AU/NZ team have kept the magazine feeling fresh, vibrant and tapped into the pop culture zeitgeist with some truly exceptional journalism and design.

“To work with a crew of fellow passionate music lovers who are committed to honouring Rolling Stone’s rich history, while still pushing the title forward, is a dream come true and I’m incredibly excited about where we’ll be taking Rolling Stone AU/NZ in the future.”