When Sharik Hasan ventured into the world of music, it was pretty much by chance. It all started at home when he was still at an early age. The piano lying in his house somehow managed to catch his attention. Since then, there has been nothing else that come close to catching his attention the same way.
“My mother used to play the piano, not professionally but out of interest. As a five-year-old child, I found it fascinating. My parents saw that I was naturally drawn to it and asked me if I wanted to learn it. I started taking lessons and then the passion just continued. I stopped because there was a lot of pressure around the classical music examination I had to write. That killed it for me,” recalls Sharik, who also mentioned that when he was 16-years-old, his passion grew apart from him for about a year.
It was only when he was in Oberlin College and Conservatory of Music in Ohio that he heard jazz music for the very first time. “I was doing mathematics and literature major but I suddenly felt re-exposed to music in a new way. I saw young people pursuing music professionally and loved the freedom that jazz offered. A few years later, it became an obsession,” he explained. Given his current reputation, Sharik owes a significant amount to the music education he has acquired. This included education from some of the best music schools such as Trinity School of Music and Berklee College of Music, Boston.
Sharik also admitted that if he stayed in India, he probably would not be able to get to where he is at today. “I’ve always wondered ‘what if’. If I had chosen another school in America, I might not have gone back to music. Maybe I would have anyway reconnected a few years later. But what I didn’t see or get in India was exposure to music of high calibre. My life just wasn’t going in that direction when I was here,” confessed the young pianist who is currently based in New York.
When he was asked if he preferred solo or group performances, his response was rather impartial. “I like both because each one’s very different. Playing solo can be nerve-racking because you’re under a lot of pressure. When I started playing with other musicians, I lost my nerve. It was like engaging in a conversation instead of delivering a monologue. As I got better, I found something appealing about going solo, even though I struggled with it. You get to be more introspective and it lends a flexibility to take the music in whatever direction one wants,” he elaborates. For the full story, you can read it here.