Short List
Category A01. Data-enhanced Creativity
Idea Creation DDB GERMANY Berlin, GERMANY
Name Company Position
Dennis May DDB Group Germany CCO
Diana Sukopp DDB Group Germany CCO
Florian Grimm DDB Group Germany MD Creative
Karsten Ruddigkeit DDB Group Germany ECD
Dennis Krumbe DDB Group Germany CD Copy
Mark Räke DDB Group Germany CD Art
Anna Rösch DDB Group Germany Senior Copy Writer
Saskia krug DDB group Germany Senior Art Director
Simon Hansen DDB Group Germany Executive Director Client Service
Katrin Spiegel DDB Group Germany Executive Director Client Service
Meike van Meegen DDB Group Germany Agency Producer
Natalie Kröger DDB Group Germany Account Director
Luca Seichter DDB Group Germany Account Director
Edward Jasion DDB Group Germany AM & CE
Ahmed Elgammal Rutgers University AI Expert
Matthias Röder The Mindshift Musicologist
Mark Gotham Cornell University Music Theorist
Walter Werzowa Musikvergnuegen Composer
Giacomo Lodi Hastings Audio Network Audio Post Production
David Hortmann Optix Post Production Editor
Philipp Grösser Optix Post Production Editor
Romuald Golenia Optix Post Production Producer
Florian Engels Optix Post Production Motion Design
Chris Iskandar Optix Post Production Motion Design
Can Ibar Optix Post Production VFX
Michael Gottschalk Optix Post Production VFX
Patrick Günther Optix Post Production VFX
Michael Schuld Telekom (Telekom Deutschland GmbH) Business Unit Lead TV & Entertainment
Stephan Althoff Telekom (Deutsche Telekom AG) Lead Corporate Sponsoring

Why is this work relevant for Creative Data?

Germany’s largest telco-provider Telekom connects people through entertainment and technology. For Beethoven’s 250th birthday, Telekom connected the world: by completing his 10th symphony. Never before had such a challenge been endeavored. Previous AI could bridge gaps in music but not compose whole symphonies. Let alone create melodies merely from written ideas. Immense amounts of data were needed to achieve this goal. Collected from music history, musicology and Beethoven’s previous compositions. For the first time in history, data was able to represent the complex mind of a genius. And while learning from continuous feedback, data itself eventually became creative.


In 2020, Germany celebrated the 250th birthday of its most renowned composer: Ludwig van Beethoven. A creative genius and one of the most radical innovators of his time. The country’s leading telco-provider Telekom wanted to honor the composer with a unique project. They gathered world-renowned AI experts, musicologists, music historians and composers to see if Beethoven’s mind could be recreated through an artificial intelligence. Their goal? To complete his last symphony – an invaluable masterpiece that Beethoven couldn’t finish during his much too short life. By connecting artificial intelligence with human emotion, Telekom wanted to turn technology into a tool that connects people from all over the world. A commitment that is so deeply ingrained in the brand Telekom, that they made it their tagline: “Erleben, was verbindet” (“Experiencing connection”).

Describe the Creative idea / data solution (20% of vote)

When Beethoven died, he left behind 40 sketches for a final 10th symphony. 200 years later, we asked ourselves: Can an artificial intelligence, enhanced by human emotion, complete Beethoven's legacy? At the time, AI couldn’t continue a piece of music for more than a few seconds. Now, it had to create an entire symphony from a few sketches. A team of world-renowned AI experts, music historians, musicologists and composers had to create a fundamentally new generation of AI. One that studied Beethoven’s music and his influences, but that also learned to compose on its own. And composing it did: hundreds of phrases each night! The experts selected the most powerful ones – and gave it back to the AI to elaborate upon. After three years of work and two million notes, Beethoven’s 10th symphony was finally completed. Though the intense collaboration between artificial intelligence and human emotion.

Describe the data driven strategy (30% of vote)

In order to get the computational process going, it was necessary to make many musical decisions beforehand. The experts had to decide which kind of music they were trying to generate and what constituted relevant examples to learn from. The first step was to decipher and interpret Beethoven’s sketches. What did he have in mind for his 10th symphony? A vision of the work was created – and accordingly, an AI that could translate this vision into music. Having studied Beethoven and the composers who had influenced him, the AI started to create. At a speed and quantity, like no human had done before! The experts compared the AI’s compositions with what Beethoven had in mind for his last symphony. They selected the phrases that Beethoven would most likely have chosen himself. Then, they let the AI continue those phrases, refining the composition day by day.

Describe the creative use of data, or how the data enhanced the creative output (30% of vote)

Becoming a great musician involves learning about recurring patterns through exposure to existing work. The composer Deryck Cooke once put it this way: ‘what we call inspiration must be an unconscious creative re-shaping of already existing materials in the tradition’. The difference between a genius and an average musician is often their knowledge, the ‘data’ they have collected through time. The AI that was created for BEETHOVEN X was able to study Beethoven’s work up to the smallest detail. As well as those of Bach, Händel and other composers who had influenced him. It acquired the knowledge of musicologists, music historians and composers. For the first time, the sheer amount of data was able to recreate the mind of a genius. A mind that created more musical variations than any human composer could ever come up with – turning data into an invaluable tool for human creativity.

List the data driven results (20% of vote)

When “Beethoven X – The AI Project” was introduced to the public in 2019, both journalists and bloggers started to report on the project, keeping up with its development and supplying details to its tech background. Shortly after the second concert in October, 594 + publications were counted in print and online media, radio and TV. Overall, a press coverage worth 729 million Euros was reached by the end of October as well as an ad value of 14,3 million Euros (still counting, this only reflects the first month). More importantly, however, a live audience of 3000 guests saw the premiere of Beethoven’s 10th symphony in the Telekom Forum Bonn and in the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg. Added by an uncountable number of viewers who watched the events on Telekom’s own TV channel and via a free Livestream on their website – strengthening the brand’s reputation as Germany’s leading telco and entertainment