The great German composer Beethoven’s genetic code has been turned into a classical composition, which will be premiered at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this week.
The 15-minute piece, written for piano and cello, has been produced by Scottish composer Stuart Mitchell, who used software, which, according to him, translates amino acid DNA sequences into melodic tones.
"Everyone expected to hear it in the style of Beethoven but the melody is almost tragic. To me it sounds like somebody fighting, struggling, a really sympathetic melody with a great deal of soul," the Scotsman quoted 45-year-old Mitchell as saying.
The work will premiere as part of the Festival of Spirituality and Peace.
Mitchell's company, Your DNA Song, offers the service of translating amino acid sequences into "musical poems".
"You are a beautiful song waiting to be heard. Your DNA carries the expression of who you are," the website advertises.
He said that about two clients a month pay about 800 pounds to have their DNA sequenced and turned into music in its programme.The DNA sequence for Beethoven comes from the generation of families in and around Bonn in northwest Germany, where Beethoven was born, a region that prides itself on its musical culture and history.
"It is the group of the family that he came from, less than a 1,000 people," said Mitchell.
The company has considered trying to secure access to a lock of Beethoven's hair - one was famously sold at Sotheby''s in 1994 - but it has so far proved impossible.
The software relies on DNA to produce "beautiful melodic chains", he said.
"Something in the genetic makeup from certain areas of the world have produced Mozarts, Beethovens, Ravels, even Jimi Hendrix. There's some interaction between the soul and DNA that brings out some genius,” he added.