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Music and AI Collaboration

A call out from Nicholas Moroz (DPhil in Music (Composition)): 

Hello! I’m a composer on the Dphil in Music programme. I’m searching for a collaborator for a project that would explore the musical and artistic potential of AI.

Inspired by recent audio technologies that enable live translation (Microsoft), and speech synthesis (Deepmind WaveNet), as well from developments in visual programmes such as Deep Dream Generator (see image below), I’d like to create an interactive public installation in Oxford, in which instrumental or speech sounds are transformed into or crossed with birdsong, ideally in real time, using neural network systems and vocoders.

From an aesthetic perspective, I’m particularly interested in the interfaces between humanity, technology, and nature, and I’d like to see what happens when they’re mixed together using current technology that’s not yet available as user friendly commercial music software. I’m less interested in technically perfect reproductions or translations of sounds, but rather, in a kind of sci-fi (e.g. Black Mirror) or experimental way (from Stockhausen to Squarepusher); I’m more fascinated by what happens when things are slightly imperfect, glitching, or totally inhumane and surreal - this seems to be where interesting things happen that ultimately expand our understanding of human nature and the world - but which at the same time as experiences can also be beautiful, fun, and emotive.

The idea is in a very germinal and open state, and my expertise is in composition and electronic music; not computer science and mathematics! Therefore I’m looking for someone perhaps like a fellow graduate student in computer science, mathematics or engineering, who would be interested in working on the idea from scratch with me as an equal collaborator. I propose we would have shared authorship of the project. I’m happy to meet and discuss with anyone interested, and can be contacted via email.

Images: Hieronymus Bosch. Detail from The Garden of Earthly Delights (central panel) .Processed with Deep Dream Generator. Clockwise from top left: Dream 0, 1, 30, 65.

For more information or to apply, please email