EXTREMIX: rediscovering musical heritage

The 4th International Possibility Studies Conference – organised by Cambridge University under the auspices of the Possibility Studies Network – will push the boundaries of knowledge and explore new possibilities. This year’s theme is Expanding Conceptions for Research on Possibility, the event brings together scholars, researchers and practitioners from around the world. Leading speakers from the social sciences and humanities, education, art and design will share their insights and innovations.

On Monday 8 July 2024, from 13:30 to 15:00; Tijn Borghuis, affiliated with Eindhoven University of Technology and Musi-co (NL), will present The Extremix Project: Exploring and Reinterpreting Musical Heritage through Generative AI. In this session, he explains how an AI model was deployed to bridge the musical practice of John Dowland with that of contemporary music producers. This collaboration between Musica, Musi-co and Concertgebouw Brugge showed new possibilities of cultural interaction unlocked by generative AI.

Generative AI makes it possible to make new artistic spaces tangible. By training an AI model on a body of work, new material arising from the existing works can be generated. This creates a latent space of possible ideas that people can explore and interpret. In EXTREMIX, this approach was applied to John Dowland’s Lacrimae or Seven Tears (1604).

Concertgebouw Brugge wanted to highlight this masterpiece with an innovative approach. Musica selected five young Belgian producers who, using an AI model by Musi-co trained on Dowlands scores, created new work in group. This collaboration resulted in a contemporary ‘mirror concert’ performed in May 2022.


Monday 8 July 2024 from 1:30pm to 3pm


University of Cambridge, United Kingdom