Workshop Program


ECAL 2007

Concert: program

Concert: call for pieces


Call for papers

Music-AL Workshop 2007

DEADLINE EXTENDED! - new deadline for paper submission 16th March 2007

Workshop on Music and Artificial Life part of ECAL 2007

10 September 2007, Belem Cultural Centre, Lisbon, Portugal

Organised by Interdisciplinary Centre for Computer Music Research (ICCMR), Plymouth, UK


The Artificial Life approach to music is an exciting new development for composers and researchers. For composers, it provides an innovative and natural means for generating musical ideas from a specifiable set of primitive components and processes, reflecting the compositional process of generating a variety of ideas by brainstorming followed by selecting the most promising ones for further iterated refinement. For researchers, such techniques are used to model the cultural transmission and change of a population's body of musical ideas over time. For example, the development and maintenance of musical styles within particular cultural contexts and their reorganization and adaptation in response to cultural exchange.

In both cases, the musical evolution can be influenced by a variety of constraints and tendencies built into the system, such as realistic psychological factors that influence the way that music is experienced, learned, stored, modified, and passed on between individuals. Realistic Artificial Life models of music require sophisticated techniques for the implementation of such constraints and tendencies, which involves an interdisciplinary understanding of music from different points of view, ranging from neuroscience and psychology, to computing and musicology.

This workshop will focus on the applications of Artificial Life to music and the tools needed to create and study such systems. These tools are mostly drawn from research into the origins and evolution of biological organisms, ecologies, and cultural systems on the one hand, and in part from A-life computer modelling methodologies on the other.

The goal of this workshop is to bring together a multidisciplinary core of musicians and scientists who are working at the crossroads of A-life and music, to provide a common ground for dialog and interaction, to highlight the latest advances, and to discuss the main directions for the future. Topics of the workshop include (but not limited to):

• Composition and Performance
• Computational Biomusicology
• Computational Neuromusicology
• Emergent Musical Behaviour
• Modelling Techniques (Genetic Algorithms, Cellular Automata, Neural Nets, Swarms, etc.)
• Musical Creativity
• Origins and Evolution of Music
• Unconventional Computing for Music (Analog Computation, Bio-computing, Chemical Computing, etc.)
• Signal Processing (Audio and Music)
• Sound-based Communication Systems in Animals and Animats
• Sound Synthesis
• Sensors and Actuators (for A-life music models)

In addition to scientific and technical standard research papers, composers and practitioners are encouraged to submit papers reporting practical applications of Alife to music; e.g., discussing a musical composition using Alife.

Given the wide range of topics, authors should make sure their papers are contextualized in the field of A-life and music so as indicate how the proposed A-life approach to the problem in question is contributing to music or how the music approach is contributing to A-life.

Paper submission

All workshop papers will be reviewed by a minimum of two members of the scientific programme committee.

Submissions (preferably in PDF format) should be sent by email to:


with a Cc: to


NOTE: All submissions will be acknowledged. If you do not receive an acknowledgement within 48 hours, please contact us to double check whether your submission reached us safely.

The submissions should be full papers (not abstracts), following the Springer LNCS format, with a maximum page length of 12 pages. LaTeX and Word templates can be found here.

Authors should remain anonymous, as the review process will be double-blind review. An attempt should be made to conceal any self-referencing that would identify the authorship.

All selected papers will be published in the proceedings of ECAL 07 workshops, as a CD-ROM, which will be distributed to all delegates of the conference on arrival. In addition to the CD-ROM proceedings:

a) Up to 2 papers will be recommended by the programme committee for publication in Leonardo Music Journal, Vol. 18, on the theme "Why Live? Performance in the Age of Digital Reproduction". This issue of LMJ is due for publication in December 2008. Therefore, authors will have the chance to produce an updated version of the recommended papers.

b) Authors of all selected papers will be invited to publish a book-chapter version of the paper in a book (provisionally entitled Sounds of Artificial Life: Breeding Music with Digital Biology) to be published after the workshop. More details on this publication opportunity will be provided with the notification of the results of the reviewing process.

Format of the workshop:

Each speaker would be given 30 minutes to present his/her work including 5 minutes for discussion. The last hour of the workshop will be assigned for a concluding discussion on the future of the field. This will be an interactive session for open group discussion.

Important Dates

* Submission deadline: 09 March 2007 16 March 2007
* Notification date: 23 April 2007 30 April 2007
* Final date for camera-ready copies to organizers: 18 May 2007

Please note that our deadlines are earlier than the main ECAL deadlines.

Organising committee:

Eduardo R Miranda (Chair, University of Plymouth, UK)
Joao Martins (University of Plymouth, UK)
Qijun Zhang (University of Plymouth, UK)

Scientific and Programme Committee:

Amilcar Cardoso (University of Coimbra, Portugal)
Andrew Brown (Queensland University of Technology, Australia)
Andrew Horner (The Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, China)
Christopher Ariza (Towson University, USA)
John Al Biles (Rochester Institute of Technology, USA)
John Matthias (University of Plymouth, UK)
Jon McCormack (Monash University, Australia)
Geraint Wiggins (Goldsmiths College University of London, UK)
Larry Bull (University of the West of England, UK)
Marc Leman (Ghent University, Belgium)
Mitchell Whitelaw (University of Canberra, Australia)
Palle Dahlstedt (Univesity of Göteborg, Sweden)
Peter Bentley (University College London, UK)
Tim Blackwell (Goldsmiths College University of London, UK)