Jordan Rudess

2023-24 CAST Visiting Artist

Jordan Rudess. Image courtesy of the artist.
Jordan Rudess. Image courtesy of the artist.

Exploring the potential of AI in live collaborative musical performance

About the Project

Renowned musician Jordan Rudess collaborates with Professor Joe Paradiso and the Media Lab Responsive Environments Group to create new technology that probes the boundaries of where AI meets musical control and expression. An AI model trained on Rudess’s playing style and technique improvises and performs live in a duet with its human counterpart. Sometimes leading, sometimes following, the AI and human together create new and unique music that interacts in real time with a physical installation that responds to and influences the behavior of the model.

Over a series of visits to campus, Rudess shares his perspectives on music technology, performance, and technique through workshops, guest lectures, and a collaborative concert.


Past Events

Open class with guest speaker Jordan Rudess: MAS.837 Principles of Electronic Music Interfaces
Tuesday, April 9, 2024 / 12:30-2pm / E15-341
Open to MIT ID holders

Residency visits:
April 2024
May 2024
September 2024

Additional program details to be announced.


Voted “Best Keyboardist of All Time” by Music Radar Magazine, Jordan Rudess is best known as the keyboardist/multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire for platinum-selling Grammy Award–winning rock band, Dream Theater. A classical prodigy who began his studies at the Juilliard School at the age of 9, his music is a unique blend of classical and rock influences. In addition to playing in Dream Theater and his solo career, Rudess has worked with a wide range of artists, including Deep Purple, David Bowie, Steven Wilson, Jan Hammer, Enrique Iglesias, the Paul Winter Consort, Annie Haslam, Liquid Tension Experiment (with John Petrucci, Mike Portnoy, and Tony Levin), LMR (with Tony Levin and Marco Minneman), Blackfield, Aviv Geffen, the Dixie Dregs, Rod Morgenstein, and Tony Williams among others. 

His interest in state-of-the-art keyboard controllers and music apps is another area of his career in which he has achieved success. Rudess owns the successful app development company Wizdom Music, creators of award-winning apps such as MorphWiz, SampleWiz, and Geo Synthesizer. Wizdom Music’s latest app, GeoShred, was created in collaboration with moForte, founding members of Stanford University’s Sondius team. In addition, Rudess is the author of two keyboard technique books including his latest, Total Keyboard Wizardry: A Technique and Improvisation Workbook. Recently, he was an artist-in-residence at Stanford University’s Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA).

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Collaborators at MIT

Faculty Advisor: Joe Paradiso, Alexander W. Dreyfoos (1954) Professor and Director of the Responsive Environments Group, MIT Media Lab

AI/Music System Designer: Lancelot Blanchard, Research Assistant, Responsive Environments Group, MIT Media Lab

Lighting Artist/Designer: Perry Naseck, Research Assistant, Responsive Environments Group, MIT Media Lab

With thanks to Irmandy Wicaksono, whose Knitted Keyboard inspired the initial collaboration.