World premiere of the play, composed by the Yandex “neural network” took place in Sochi

World premiere of the play, composed by the Yandex “neural network” took place in Sochi

At the closing concert of the XII International Winter Art Festival in Sochi, maestro Yuri Bashmet, head of the State Symphony Orchestra “New Russia”, performed a fantasy play for Viola and Orchestra “Digital Sunrise”, written by the Yandex neural network in collaboration with the Russian composer Kuzma Bodrov.

The world premiere of the composition of the machine, supplemented by man, made a great impression on art historians. The play was even called sensational. Although the neural network also “studied” Bach, Mozart, Schnittke and other recognized classics, her work was closer in spirit to avant-garde, American minimalism and Steve Reich, Philip Glass, Terry Riley behind them.

The idea to introduce the composition of the car into the gala concert came to the organizers of the festival spontaneously. They wondered if artificial intelligence could create something truly creative. Musicians and listeners were looking forward to the performance. Often on the Internet, disputes have flared up about the wisdom of using neural networks as artists, composers, writers instead of living and, most importantly, feeling, creators.

Kuzma Bodrov, who worked together with artificial intelligence on the creation of the play, explained that the melody lines composed by AI are not very similar to human creativity because of the randomness of their development, the “brokenness”, and abrupt transitions. In “collaboration” with the machine, the composer developed the most successful themes proposed by the neural network, made a full orchestration and designed everything into a complete work.

“Yandex’s neural network may well help composers. Usually, when you undertake an essay, a painful search begins – where to start, what to cling to. We are looking for a chord, intonation, some piece of melody – a thread, pulling which you can unravel. These initial intonations can be offered by a neural network,” said the composer.

Perhaps the computerization of creativity is not far off. Already created and sold was the first picture painted by the machine, and several avant-garde and symphonic music pieces composed. But today, the arts are fully owned by people, as only they can appreciate the “machine” creations.