12 robotic arms from the FOREST project on stage

Georgia Tech School of Music Presents:

Georgia Tech School of Music Presents: FOREST

Saturday, December 11, 2021
Caddell Building

Dr. Gil Weinberg, Professor and Director of Georgia Tech Center of Music Technology

Georgia Tech Robotic Musicianship Lab

About the FOREST

FOREST is the performative outcome of an NSF funded project aimed at enhancing trust between humans and robots through sound and gesture. As part of the project, we trained a deep learning network to generate emotion carrying sounds to accompany robotic gestures. We also developed a rule-based AI system for creating emotional human-inspired gestures for non-anthropomorphic robots. The performance aims to create trustful connections between human and robotic musicians and dancers, which would lead to novel creative and artistic ideas for both machines and humans.

In tonight's performance, you will see an end-of-semester presentation featuring work by undergraduate and graduate Robotic Musicianship students.

FOREST robots on stage


Jocelyn Kavanagh

'Game of Life' or 'Life' by John Conway is the most famous cellular automaton where cells revolve through different relational states, simulating the dynamic evolution of a society of living organisms. In this piece, the powering algorithm is a variation on 'Game of Life', where each of the robots' states are mapped to gestures and musical events. Each robot's state is determined by its neighbors' states, and the states progress through the robots with a contagion effect. Because the starting states of the robots are randomized and the 'Game' can continue for any number of iterations, the piece will look and sound differently each time.

Dancer performs with robotic FOREST


Amit Rogel

Movement looks at different ways a robot can record a human and dance with them in realtime. The piece uses a motion capture suit to record all of a dancer's gestures, and the computer maps the movements onto a robot or has the robot react with its own gestures.

Music - Nightlight by Illenium

Performer - Rima Peddi

Photo of 4 FOREST robots


Andrew Wang

A dance designed to reflect the unique atmosphere of Vulpey's "What We Feel." It features a middle section determined by mood detection analyzing eye blinks, employing the use of an EEG.

Music - What We Feel by Vulpe

FOREST robots and Shimon


Nitin Hugar, Hardik Goel, Daniel Pilipenko

This piece is themed around the forest of ‘Vrindavan’ where Lord Krishna spent most of his childhood. With his musical virtuosity, Lord Krishna could communicate with the entire forest and bring it to life. 

In this performance,  Robots come alive to music and interact and play with live musicians. The robots listen and respond to melody, harmony and rhythm of the performers and sing/dance along with them. The tech involves real-time pitch and beat detection that trigger different movements and sounds. 

Performers - Nitin Hugar, flute and Nikhil Ravi Krishnan, drum

Student interacts with a FOREST robot


Rose Sun and Michael Verma

Watch FOREST come to life in this performance as the tourists interact with them using a tactile interface and computer vision. You will be listening to a Chinese EDM piece composed by Georgia Tech music technology students, while enjoying an augmented sound experience as the tourists control sound effects by moving the robot joints. The tourists will also bring out different personalities in the robots by interacting with them in fun ways.

Music - Chinese Dub by Qinying Lei and Rose Sun

Dancers pose for a photo with the robots


Rima Peddi

This piece is an upbeat, high energy dance with the aim to highlight the interaction between human dancers and the robots. The piece is entirely pre-programmed and manually adjusted to match the dancers the robots are performing with.

Music - The Arena by Lindsey Stirling and Just Got Paid by Sigala, Ella Eyre, and Meghan Trainor

Performers - Rima Peddi, Sharnitha Sudhaher, & Meena Ajith

Georgia Tech School of Music

Through interdisciplinary degree programs, outstanding performance ensembles, and innovative research endeavors, the Georgia Tech School of Music cultivates a rich legacy of musical traditions and develops cutting-edge technologies to help define music's future. The School serves students in bachelors, masters, and doctoral programs in music technology and offers innovative performance opportunities, courses, and cultural and artistic experiences for students throughout the Institute.

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Georgia Tech Center of Music Technology

Learn more about the GTCMT

Robotic Musicianship Lab

Learn more about the GT Robotic Musicianship Lab

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