The World At His Fingertips
In a pop music heavy world, where not enough attention and appreciation is given to classical
music, it is exciting to hear of a child
musical genius bringing new life to
14-year-old Shaun Agostine’s
passion for piano started at the
age of three and he composed his
frst piece of music at the tender
age of eight; he is fast becoming a
Lebanese icon in the music industry,
earning himself the title of ‘the next
We caught up with the young
musical sensation following his
performance in Dubai last month.
What led to you performing in
By the time I was 10 I had already
performed in several countries
worldwide and at that age I also
played my compositions at the
Word Classical Series in Dubai
during a concert by E. Kunz, one
of the best pianists in the world.
I then appeared at several more
international concerts at the
London History Museum, the
opening of Beirut Museum, the
Governor’s Palace at São Paolo,
the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas,
and in Rome, as well as many
other major venues and cities
across the world.
Following these performances, I was
approached and asked to perform my
compositions in Dubai with the Almaty
Symphony Orchestra led by the conductor
Marat Bengazliev. This was a great honour
and one of my biggest successes yet.
How do you balance between your
personal and tour lives?
I’ve been a student at the International
College in Beirut for most of my life, but
this year I’m moving to Sagesse High
School because it’s closer to my house.
This will allow me to dedicate more time
to my passion. Math and science are
my two favourite subjects. I read a lot
about science and I’m very interested in
discovering the world and exploring new
I’ve also always been interested in
mechanical engineering. I speak English,
Arabic and French ﬂuently and I love sports,
cars, and of course the piano.
I always try my best to organise my time,
give priority to my passion and work on my
compositions. I’m a dedicated student and
I achieve good grades, especially in the
sciences. All in all, I live a normal but very
What prompted your passion in piano?
I was three when I frst discovered this
marvellous instrument and I instantly fell
in love with it. Since then, I’ve followed my
passion for music and never looked back.
I remeber the time I heard my sister Luna
and my brother Juan playing at home.
Hearing them made me excited for when I
would be allowed to join in, which sparked
my interest. Soon, I was playing myself and
my mother recognised that I had a talent.
She believed in me from that day and has
been by my side throughout my whole
musical journey. She has great musical
taste but there have never been any other
serious piano players in my family.
Who are some of your key mentors and
I started listening to Chopin because I
admire the way he composed, but then I
started developing my own style of music.
I also admire the flm scores created
by Hans Zimmer, which is particularly
important to me because I hope to go into
flm music in the future. I’m proud to have
already recorded fve albums at the iconic
Abbey Road Studio Two in London and I
hope to compose for the big screen soon.
Tell me about your frst music piece.
I composed my frst music piece at the age
of eight and my frst album was Letters
to my Mom. I dedicated it to my mother
because she is my muse and always
encourages and supports me.
What were some of the challenges you
faced and what did you learn from them?
Life is full of challenges and the biggest
ones are those that I set for myself. The
piano, my passion, is my world. I compose
my music not for the sake of composing
but because I want my music to serve
a purpose and reach people’s hearts. I
want it to mean something to them, so my
biggest challenge is to achieve this and
reach my own high standards.
How do you feel about being a protégé?
To be honest, I don’t feel pressurised to
do what I do. My family and friends would
support me no matter what path I choose,
so I have chosen to do what I believe in
most. I am lucky to be pursuing my passion
and I want to use to it make a positive
change in the world, like I did with my Als
concert. I try to use my talent to make the
world a better place and this is something
that I love.
What do you love the most about
I love the rush of emotions I experience
when I’m on stage performing my
compositions. I enter my own world and
invite other people into it, which is a
special feeling. Performing is a beautiful
experience but it requires a lot of attention
and concentration. The expectations can
be daunting but they all fade away as soon
as I start to play.
Do you have a philosophy you live by?
Always pursue your passion fully and
surround yourself with supportive and
loving family and friends while you do that.
What’s next for you?
I’ll be visiting London soon to record
my latest compositions at Abbey Road
Studio Two. I’m also preparing for my next
concerts in Paris and Portugal.
Celebrate Arabic Music And Heritage
08 July, 2019