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Music of the Sails

1 – 31 October 2023

The Sydney Opera House comes alive like never before through an uncanny symbiosis of machine learning and human creativity, as the sounds and the data from the building itself are dramatically recomposed  for an unforgettable 50th-anniversary digital artwork. Audiences will be able to access the work online via the Stream platform 24/7 across October and for three special nights from 6 – 8 October, Music of the Sails will also be available to experience in person, for free, in an intimate purpose-built venue in the Western Foyer. 

The Sydney Opera House becomes the star

As we celebrate our 50th year, we’re dreaming about the future, and thinking about the ways in which technology will impact creativity and performance. In Music of the Sails, we flip the relationship between the building and the art that inhabits its walls.  What if the House itself could stand in the spotlight on stage? What would it sound like? What would it sing to us?  

Music of the Sails is an ambitious digital artwork that reimagines the sounds of the world-famous building in a unique audio-visual soundscape running for 744 hours across the entire month of October. 

A generative, audio-visual artwork made from data, artificial intelligence and field recordings, including the sounds of the Concert Hall’s grand organ, Music of the Sails augments the sonic secrets of the building in a way that we’ve never heard before.  

The ground-breaking project is a creative collaboration between the Opera House, the University of New South Wales' Interactive Media Lab and music technologists Uncanny Valley. It is a captivating fusion of architecture and generative music techniques with cutting-edge uses of generative and artificial intelligence methods to reveal the Opera House as a living and dynamic work of art in action. 

Audiences will be able to access the work online via the Stream platform 24/7 across October and for three special nights from 6 – 8 October, Music of the Sails will also be available to experience in person, for free, in an intimate purpose-built venue in the Western Foyer. Members from the project team involved in creating the work will be on hand to answer questions about the project and the future possibilities of technology and creativity. 

Behind the scenes with the creative team

About the artists

Interactive Media Lab, University of New South Wales

The Interactive Media Lab at UNSW’s School of Art & Design researches and teaches emerging media technologies and their application in creative work.

Uncanny Valley

Uncanny Valley’s focus is one part musical craft, and the other sonic technology. Armed with decades of experience, they harness their diverse musical expertise and collaborate with artists and brands to create their unique sound. They utilise emerging technologies and engage audiences to tell musical stories via all mediums.

Meet the team

Other information

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