ResearchWorks: Music in the Age of AI

  • 5pm
Head shot of Rob Laidlow


About this event:

Platform / Discussion | Research | ResearchWorks
Event type:
Free | Online

Event information

This talk will cover a range of perspectives, ideas, and recent music at the intersection of contemporary classical music and AI, and more broadly advanced technology and the arts.

The first part of the talk will give several practical examples of artists utilising AI in their creative process, including my own recent music. The speaker, Robert Laidlow, will introduce the audience to several AI tools that are freely available and give an overview of how they function both in musically and technically.

The second part of the talk will cover aesthetic matters relating to music and advanced technology. Robert will discuss ideas relating to the relationship between the future and the past, authenticity and (deep) fakeness, and musical structuralism are becoming increasingly important as I respond to the age of AI. Each of these will be addressed.

The final part of the talk covers philosophical and ethical matters on which music can offer an important perspective. These include: what it means to live and improvise with machines in everyday life; what the genuine ethical concerns surrounding advanced technologies might be; how we might understand non-human forms of intelligence; and the nature of creativity.


Robert Laidlow is a composer and researcher based in the UK. His work is concerned with discovering and developing new forms of musical expression rooted in the relationship between advanced technology and live performance. He is currently a Fellow in Composition at Jesus College, Oxford, through which he is exploring the artistic possibilities presented by technologies including virtual reality, video games, and artificial intelligence in classical music. From 2018-22 he was the PRiSM PhD Researcher in Artificial Intelligence with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra at the Royal Northern College of Music, resulting in a number of pieces including the large-scale work Silicon (2022), the concerto Warp (2021), and the ensemble piece Three Entistatios (2019).

What is ResearchWorks?

Guildhall School’s ResearchWorks is a programme of events centred around the School’s research activity, bringing together staff, students and guests of international standing. We run regular events throughout the term intended to share the innovative research findings of the School and its guests with students, staff and the public.