Exceptionalist 010: Cyrill Ibrahim - STPL

Exceptionalist 010: Cyrill Ibrahim

Cyrill completed a Master of Performance degree at the Royal College of Music under a full scholarship awarded by the government of The Netherlands. He has gone on to perform at a number of major venues including the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, St John’s Smith Square in London and the Philharmonie in Berlin.

Cyrill became ‘Artist of the Week’ on BBC Radio 3 shortly after the release of his first album, ‘Dialogue’. He has also appeared on ‘The One Show’ and recently played live on Radio 3’s ‘In Tune’. Cyrill has worked with renowned pianists such as Maria João Pires, Steven Osborne, Rustem Hayroudinoff. The Daily Telegraph named him: 'One of the most exciting pianists of his generation'.

Cyrill is co-founder of The World Harmony Orchestra - which raises awareness of humanitarian causes - and the Classical Music Collective - an educational platform that believes nobody plays an instrument alone and that we all need supporters and engagers around us to express our intrinsically musical world. 

Cyrill in the STPL Moondust Grey Crew

When did you fall in love with what you do and how did you get started?

Music has always been a part of my life and classical music, and the piano repertoire in particular, has fascinated me as long as I can remember. The piano, as an instrument, was unquestionably going to be my life’s dedication. I started playing the piano when I was 6 and was never prompted to play by my environment, it was an intrinsic calling. 

All starts are difficult, but through adversity progress is made and essentially truth is born.

What was your earliest childhood ambition?

An ambition starts with an idea or a feeling that needs clarifying and shaping. In my case it was the need to express through sound, in particular being a medium between the music and the audience. It was shaped into an ambition to become a concert pianist. The dream doesn’t go away.

What drives you on?

Knowing that progress is never achieved in one straight line and that when individuals create things of beauty, even the tiniest of things, one aids progress.

Ambition or talent: which matters more to success?

True ambition comes with a tremendous amount of hard work, dedication and adversity, but the most important ingredient to boot is talent. It takes courage to really gauge the true scope of one’s talent, thereafter the commitment really starts. It might or might not lead to what one considers success, as the perception of success is subjective.

What career advice would you give your 16yr old self?

Keep building your own concept of a career and uphold the dream.

What is the greatest challenge of our time?

To really listen to one another. 

Website: www.cyrillibrahim.com
Instagram: @cyrillibrahim
Twitter: @cyrillibrahim
YouTube: @cyrillibrahim
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