Unfinished Symphony



At Huawei, our goal is to digitally connect every single person, home and organisation around the world. We want our innovations to be meaningful so we’re harnessing the power of AI alongside human expertise to make a positive impact on people’s everyday lives.

Last year we taught our AI to drive a car,  translate the sounds of humpback whales in to a love song,  and positively changed the lives of deaf children through StorySign. With our next project, we want to see the positive role technology can have on culture.

We have taken on our most creative collaboration yet, by embracing the power of Artificial Intelligence to complete Schubert’s famously unfinished Symphony No. 8. It has remained uncompleted for nearly 200 years, so we set our AI the task of finishing the most iconic and intriguing unfinished symphonies of all.

Download and listen to Huawei's finished version of Schubert's Symphony No. 8 - MP3 (90Mb) / WAV (800Mb)

What is the Unfinished Symphony?

Schubert’s Symphony No. 8 in B minor is regarded as the ultimate ‘Unfinished Symphony’. Music experts debate to this day as to why Schubert never completed it, with factors such as ill health and distraction being given as the most likely reasons. What has never been in doubt though, was that his eighth symphony was unlike anything Schubert had written before.

By completing one of the most iconic unfinished symphonies of all times, Huawei has set out to honour Schubert’s legacy, as well as taking inspiration from his pioneering spirit, by using the power of AI to finish the Symphony No. 8 in the same style that Schubert started it.

Powered by Huawei AI

 Using the power of AI, Huawei has taught its Mate 20 Pro smartphone to compose the third and fourth movements of Schubert’s famously ‘Unfinished Symphony’.

This was achieved by harnessing the power and intelligence of the Mate 20 Pro, utilising its in-built advanced technology which has been specifically designed to complete AI-based tasks.

The Mate 20 Pro smartphone listened to the first two movements of Schubert’s Symphony No. 8, analysed the key musical elements that make it so incredible, then generated the melody for the missing third and fourth movement from its analysis.

Humanly Possible

This wouldn’t have been possible without pairing the technological innovation of Huawei’s AI with human expertise, so Emmy award-winning composer Lucas Cantor was brought onboard to arrange an orchestral score based on the melody that the Mate 20 Pro smartphone composed to compete the symphony and perform it live.

“The result proves that technology offers incredible possibilities and has a significant and positive impact on modern culture.”– Lucas Cantor, Composer

Bringing the Unfinished Symphony to life

Huawei unveiled the unique version of Schubert’s Symphony No. 8 with a live performance at the iconic Cadogan Hall in London on Monday 4th February.

More than 500 people travelled to London from all over Europe for the unique, one off performance. The 67 piece orchestra began proceedings by performing the two existing movements of Schubert’s Symphony No 8 before the moment of truth, as they moved on to the new Huawei-completed third and fourth movements for the first time.

Download and listen to Huawei's finished version of Schubert's Symphony No. 8 - MP3 (90Mb) / WAV (800Mb)

Behind the Scenes

Take a look to see how we used the power of AI to push the boundaries of what is humanly possible


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