Her compositional output is substantial and represents all genres, from chamber and vocal music to choral and highly regarded symphonic works. She trained initially under Mart Saar at the Tallinn Conservatory, then from 1951 to 1954 at the Moscow Conservatory under Vissarion Shebalin. Amongst her best-known works are her Piano Sonata (1949), Piano Trio in F minor (1950), Piano Concerto (1953), Violin Concerto (1958), Symphony (1968), Variations for Piano, Clarinet and Chamber Orchestra (1972), Bukoolika for orchestra (1983) and Vesper for violin and piano/organ (1990, arranged for strings in 1998). Much of her work has been inspired by Estonian folk music.
- Bio of Ester Mägi by Urve Lippus on the Toccata Classics website
- CD release of Mägi's orchestral music
- Ester Mägi at the Estonian Music Information Centre
- Ester Mägi (1922) (Music Export Estonia)
- Chamber Players chip away at more barriers with Baltic Voices (Seattle Post-Intelligencer)