Composing computer's works to debut

02/07/2012

Later today, classical compositions created entirely by a computer program will make their world premiere.

Four pieces written by Iamus, a tool developed by the Research Group on Computational Intelligence at the University of Malaga, will be performed tonight by human musicians and broadcast live on the internet.

Francisco Vico, who is leading the project, told the Guardian that the program works by mimicking biological evolution.

"Iamus generates an initial population of compositions automatically," he explained.

"But their genomes are so simple that they barely develop into a handful of notes ... As evolution proceeds, mutations alter the content and size of this primordial genetic material and we get longer and more elaborated pieces."

The only role a human plays in the composition is to specify the length of the piece and the instruments it features.

Later this year, the London Symphony Orchestra and others will feature on an Iamus album.