Mathemusical Encounters in Singapore : a Diderot Legacy

Workshop and concerts 19 Feb 2024–23 Feb 2024

  • Research
  • Symposium

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Organizing Committee


Contact Information

General Enquiries: Ims-enquiry(AT)

Scientific Aspects Enquiries:  andreatta(AT) and carlos.agon(AT)


Under the auspices of the European Mathematical Society the Fourth Diderot Mathematical Forum, dedicated to “Mathematics and Music”, took place simultaneously in Lisbon, Paris and Vienna, in December 3-4,1999. Since this seminal event, an international Society for Mathematics and Computation in Music and a peer-review Journal of Mathematics and Music has emerged, contributing to the progressive recognition of Mathematics and Music as a discipline in its own right. In 2015, another important milestone was achieved in the form of the international workshop Mathemusical Conversations: mathematics and computation in performance and composition co-hosted by the Institute for Mathematical Sciences and the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music in Singapore. Mathemusical Encounters in Singapore : a Diderot Legacy marks the 25th anniversary of the original Mathematics and Music Diderot forum. It is an occasion to recognise the continued growth of mathematics and music and its foundational role in broader mathemusical applications ranging from music technologies to performance creativity to digital therapeutics, and to lay the groundwork for future directions in the interdisciplinary research field of Mathematics and Music.


2002. Mathematics and Music : A Diderot Mathematical Forum. Gérard Assayag, Hans Georg Feichtinger, Jose Francisco Rodrigues (eds.) Springer : Berlin, Heidelberg

2011. Mathematics and Computation in Music, Third International Conference, MCM 2011, Paris, France, June 15-17, 2011. Carlos Agon, Moreno Andreatta, Gérard Assayag, Emmanuel Amiot, Jean Bresson, John Mandereau (eds.), Lecture Notes in Computer Science / LNAI 6726, Springer.

2016. Mathemusical Conversations : Mathematics and Computation in Music Performance and Composition. Jordan B L Smith, Elaine Chew, and Gérard Assayag (eds.) Lecture Notes Series, Institute for Mathematical Sciences, National University of Singapore: Volume 32, World Scientific : Singapore, Singapore


Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music
3 Conservatory Drive
Singapore 117376

Infos and Registration



Elez / Boulaine

Elaine Chew, piano
Gérard Assayag, generative electronics Somax2
February 22, 20h
Conceived as an anticipated hommage to Pierre Boulez, a year before the centenary celebrations, this duet piece creates an open, semi-improvised dialog between dueling musical streams drawing from the rich musical history that shaped Boulez and his music, and from original sonic materials (« Boulez Reloaded »).
Elaine Chew performs, adapts, reimprovises excerpts of pieces including  Boulez's Sonata (1946) and Fragment d'une ébauche (1987), Messiaen's Vingt Regards (1944), and Ravel's Jeux d'eau (1901). The Somax2 cocreative AI program, based on REACH research, listens to Elaine's playing and uses its generative model to react to it and intervenes in an improvised manner, continuously keeping pace with both the live musician and its own underlying musical logic. Elaine's performance transforms the pieces through extreme distortions of timings and expressions in response to Somax's generative agent repartees to her actions at the keyboard, so the musician and the machine’s reciprocal listening and adaptation produce rich and previously unheard combinations. Gérard Assayag guides the somax2 agents in a way that is itself an improvisation, by steering now and then the system towards different interaction strategies or sonic materials depending on the musical situation, exemplifying a multifactorial « cocreativity ». In this cocreative extreme performance, the players' electrical heart activity, breathing, and stress will be projected visually in real time thanks to COSMOS-HEART.FM technology.
European projects ERC REACH (Raising CoCreativity in CyberHuman Musicianship, PI G. Assayag), ERC COSMOS (Computational Shaping and Modeling of Musical Structures , PI E. Chew).
Thanks to Jean-Brice Godet, Valérie Philippin, Benny Sluchin, Francesco Guerri, and other REACH music research residents, who help us by training Somax2 with their wonderful musical material, and the illustrious engineers Joakim Borg (Somax2) and Charles Picasso (HeartFM) for their software development.


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