Fun Music

Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month: Holter Highlights in Music

Are arrhythmia inherently musical? What does arrhythmia feel like? Listen to these musical renditions of snippets of ECG from a patient with atrial fibrillation and other rhythm disturbances and judge for yourself.

This is the first in a series of arrhythmia music videos leading up to the Arrhythmia Alliance’s Heart Rhythm Congress (3-6 October 2021, online), a new musical rendition of Holter Highlights: Excerpts from a patient with atrial fibrillation and other rhythm disturbances for Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month, with ECG commentary by Pier Lambiase, Professor of Cardiology at UCL/Barts Heart Centre.

The music based on the ECG was collaged and rendered by Elaine Chew from music by Libby Larson, Johann Sebastian Bach, and Astor Piazzolla. Played with rhythmic precision on a Bösendorfer VC280 Enspire PRO, the score-generated MIDI was lightly edited by Chew for articulation and dynamic (loudness) variation – timing remains intact.

Later this month, the third installment of the Arrhythmia Suite will première on World Heart Day (29 Sep 2021).

0:17 Atrial fibrillation with aberrancy (Lambiase)
1:00 Rhythm transcription and music mapping (Chew)
1:23 Mixed Meters by Larsen-Chew

1:35 Sinus rhythm, ventricular couplet, irregular atrial firing (Lambiase)
2:06 Commentary (Chew)
2:16 Siciliane by Bach-Chew

2:29 Irregular atrial ectopic firing with aberrant conduction (Lambiase)
2:59 The tango rhythm (Chew)
3:19 Tango by Piazzolla-Chew

Again! (only the music this time)
3:35 Mixed Meters by Larsen-Chew
3:43 Siciliane by Bach-Chew
3:52 Tango by Piazzolla-Chew