Transmission in Motion


“Robotic Musicianship” – Symposium with Gil Weinberg & David Abbink

The exhibition Robots love Music shows how music-playing robots have evolved from a long tradition of self-moving machines. They are sophisticated performers that enable new ways of creating and enjoying music.

Robotic musicianship, Gil Weinberg observes, has the potential to advance musical art by creating novel musical experiences that encourage humans to create, perform, and think about music in novel ways. Furthermore, the development of robots that can play, listen to and improvise on music inspires novel interdisciplinary ways of research. The development of robotic musicians brings together insights and expertise from engineering, computation, music, psychology and cognition, and in turn inspires new insights in these fields. What is it that these fields have to offer to each other? What can music do for the field of robotics and robotics for the field of music?

During this late afternoon, leading expert in robotic musicianship Gil Weinbergwill talk about his groundbreaking work. In 2005, Weinberg created Haile, a robot that can listen to human musicians, improvise and play along using a variety of musical algorithms. His next inventions were Shimon, an improvising robotic marimba player that can improvise like jazz masters, and Travis (also known as Shimi), a smart-phone enabled robotic musical companion that is designed to enhance listeners musical experiences.

David Abbink will take the audience on a journey, moving from a historical overview of how humans, technology and musicianship have mutually influenced each other, towards perspectives for a future where we co-operate with robots instead of being replaced by them. David has always been fascinated by how humans interact with machines, in particular how we control our body and use that to control tools or vehicles. Apart from being a professor in Human-Robot Interaction at TU Delft, he has also performed over 400 shows as a drummer in internationally touring rock bands.

Practical information 

  • Date: 21 September 2018
  • Time: 17.00 until 18.30
  • Place: Museum Speelklok
  • Ticket regular: €15
  • Ticket students and Museumcard: €9
  • We recommend you to visit the exhibition Robots love Music before the start of the symposium. After the symposium the exhibition is closed