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Lure – a music-theatrical exploration of AI (open studio).

In dialogue with a learning machine: an exploration of music, interactive theatre and live performance through Artificial Intelligence.

Originally meant to happen in the physical space of Munich Pathos theatre, this project became also a prototype for a theatrical staging in digital space, due to Corona. As an audience member, imagine yourself being one of the participants in this Zoom-like meeting. You enter the space with your webcam using the same custom built Augmented Reality filter which you see on all the faces in the video.

We invite you to darken your room to get the full experience.

A curious and creative character awakens. Developed inside a computer it yearns to learn. You meet it in our performance. It wants to learn about you and starts a conversation. It tries to express itself by playing with a musician. And it leaves that space to explore the world by itself.

In our open studio we invite you to a playful session with music, performance and collective discovery. You’ll be able to interact with our character Parzival, a machine-learning model created after the mediaeval adventurer.

With our prototypes we study three different artistic and technological approaches. Develop empathy with the computational character by discovering how it learns. Experience its inner workings through theatrical expression. And be touched by its musical sensitivity.

The artistic research project “Lure” transfers questions on the topics of human–machine interaction and artificial intelligence to the fields of theatre and music. We will open our studio and show our first technical prototypes and artistic steps as work-in-progress, in a theatrically staged online meeting.


Lure is a project of Munich composer and theatre maker Mathis Nitschke, Amsterdam interactive artists Luciano Pinna and Klasien van de Zandschulp, scientists from the Munich Volkswagen Group Machine-Learning Research Lab (argmax.aiPatrick van der SmagtDjalel BenbouzidNutan Chen and Munich dramaturg Elsa Büsing.

Lure – a music-theatrical exploration of AI (open studio) from Mathis Nitschke on Vimeo.

Mathis Nitschke

Mathis Nitschke is an artist who works between disciplines. He combines his studies of classical guitar, visual arts and musical composition with theatre and opera, as well as for some years also coding. In collaboration with artists from various disciplines, Nitschke tries to give contemporary music theatre a new face.

Many of Nitschke’s artistic works reflect on the processes of creating and listening to music. In his musical compositions and productions he often starts with improvised or semi-improvised performances by flesh and blood musicians to capture not only their sounds but also their personality. When it comes to further processing, he likes to proceed experimentally and is a pioneer in new technologies.

In his collaborations with institutions like the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra or ECM Records he explores the exciting border area to art mediation: He interprets the act of music listening artistically.

In 2015, Mathis Nitschke founded Sofilab, a Munich-based sonic design studio and innovation lab working at the crossroads of art, industry and technology.