Maan Hamadeh (born 29 September 1988) is a Lebanese pianist-composer and musician. He was born and raised in Baakleen, Mount Lebanon, Lebanon. He lives recently in Dubai and made his mark when he amazed the world with his spontaneous performance on Für Elise at Prague’s Vaclav Havel Airport in August 2014. His video, Für Elise in Different Tastes went viral on YouTube getting over 17 million views in two months and racking up more than 28 million until August 2016. Maan Hamadeh was honored within Arouwad Awards 2016 in Beirut as a Lebanese Musician for having a new musical style and being a bridge between different cultures. His Für Elise tops the list of Street Performance Top 10 video collection. He is called ThePianoMaan also on social media platforms and Maan is well known as an ambassador of Play Me project worldwide. He participated in the launch of the first Pop Up Piano in Dubai and was invited for several public and private events in Europe and Middle East part of which are fashion shows, International Music Day, Ramadan or Christmas season celebration. Mann Hamadeh and the Band first full-evening live concert was in Samqaniyeh el Chouf, Lebanon in addition to international interest and success on 5 August 2016.
Maan Hamadeh’s first online album, Inception was inspired by international fusions mixing different music styles and came out in January 2015. It includes covers by his selection and 2 Arabic soft mood songs composed earlier in 2009. His Christmas Spirit adapted song-collection was the most time downloaded season melody of the leader music streaming platform in MENA region, Anghami in December 2015. Maan’s popularity grows continuously by sharing his videos on selected music covers in different tastes every week on his Facebook fan page and YouTube channel. He uninterrupted rocks the world of music with his special interpretations of well known or classic pieces, an example would be his version of Lebanese National Anthem on Independence Day of Lebanon in November 2015.
Maan's second album Music Talks was released in April 2016. The concept of the online album is based on the collaboration with Wael Al Wirr guitarist, except the opening song, Only Piano; it is Maan’s own composition and solo playing. In other different tasted cover songs his piano virtuosity is accompanied by Wael Al Wirr’s talented guitar playing. The album is conversation of instruments where music talks more than words by piano and guitar. The title is also an equivoque as reflection to the main life-sensations and events wherein not money, but music talks.
ThePianoMaan’s third In Different Tastes album name was given by his unique style (released in November 2016). Beyond special musical style as his brand, „In Different Tastes” is the album of different orientation feelings as well. It contains the romantic solo playing cover „Hello” for Lionel Richie which is interesting in that he plays several accompanying instruments in addition to the piano. “Mawtini” IDT is the passion for the Homeland as “Ya Hobbi Li Ghab” is tribute to Melhem Barakat (1945-2016). Broken Angel (Arash) mixing Kalimat (Majida El Roumi) cover closes the row of 13 international songs collection in different taste but with the same spirit. Maan Hamadeh recorded his third album accompanied by his guitarist friend Wael Al Wirr. Exception a collaboration between Maan Hamadeh and Ahmed Al Shaiba, covering All of Me for John Legend, using the piano and oud instruments.
Maan’s musical inspirations are all pieces having a rhythm: well-known classical music, Wadee Al Safi, Fairuz, Yanni, Turkish music, general fusions and Orientals. Most of his music recordings are tagged with the "IDT" notation which refers to "In Different Tastes". This means, Maan Hamadeh usually plays a musical piece in multiple rhythms like Waltz, Pop, Oriental, in addition to the music’s original rhythm. That is the style he adopted after his video in Prague where he played the Für Elise in the original rhythm, pop rhythm, march rhythm, oriental rhythm, and back to the original rhythm.
Maan Hamadeh was born on 29 September 1988 in a small village called Baakleen as third youngest son – followed his brother, Fouad and his sister, Diana - of an acknowledged, prestigious family of its community. Since his father, Maarouf Hamade has managed the Shouf National College as director in Baakleen since 1978 the family took high importance of their children’s comprehensive education. His unpretending, human values and women respecting, traditionalist but so open-minded intercultural personality came from the young ages. Maan Hamadeh's parents, mainly his housewife and highly thoughtful mother, Dalal Hamade introduced him to several cultures, arts and raised Maan on improving natural talents.
Maan Hamadeh was connected with music at a very young age when his siblings used to take private music lessons at home. He watched them and after their tutorials Maan tried himself on the keyboard. He asked his own instrument when he was 4 years old. The way he played first was by ear. In his young age Maan Hamadeh preferred mainly to spend his free time at his keyboard and playing music. He attended music lessons and at the age of 14, Maan started performing in events, and festivals within Lebanon. His main instrument was the keyboard however he is familiar with playing others like xylophone and cajon. Maan Hamadeh developed his music repository by listening to diverse music genres and playing them. His different tasted style also was improved by experiencing various cultures.
As a child of intellectual family, he continued along music with his studies. Maan Hamadeh graduated from school in 2006 with General Sciences concentration and in 2010 from the American University of Beirut with a bachelor's degree of Computer Science. His music career would have never happen without the support of his parents who taught Maan for balance of educational and professional life with playing piano.
Start of Music Career
Maan Hamadeh played on keyboard in bands since age 14. After finishing the university he started Technology career as System Analyst and Application Developer at Transmed in Beirut (August 2010). In parallel Maan played piano on events and festivals within Lebanon on every weekend and ofttimes weekdays as well. He finished his Album Mixed Moods Effects in 2009, inspired by mainly Arabic style mixed with Turkish and music genres of Western culture however he released just some part of whole composing in public (Inception, 2015) and played its songs in events.
Maan Hamadeh suspended his band performances when he moved to Dubai and started to work as Technology Consultant at Deloitte, August 2012. As Maan used to get the rhythm of new residency and job challenges he felt deep necessary to have his instrument in new home, Dubai. Until now those 8 months were the longest period in Maan’s life without his keyboard accordingly he equipped a home studio with Korg keyboard and all technical sets for video recording and editing. Later he expanded his home studio.
In this time Maan Hamadeh built up the basic elements of social media platforms and started sharing mashup compositions via main online music stores. The first music piece Leiliyyi Btirja'a Ya Leil for Fairuz was rolled out on his YouTube channel, 13 September 2013, followed by remix of the Twilight movie soundtrack by Yiruma - River Flows in You cover in October 2013. Next shared videos came from early Mixed Moods Effects album.
Maan Hamadeh spent 12 days in Europe, visiting Mykonos, Budapest and Prague without playing music and became very excited about it. While Maan and childhood friend, Rami El Ghoussainy were looking for the gate to board of next flight to Amsterdam at Vaclav Havel Airport, Rami stopped him and pointed toward a piano. So like a baby who has found his mother after getting lost, Maan ran to it and stunned the passengers.
First people were indifferent listening to a normal Für Elise version, but after Maan started with his attention-grabbing remixes they were very engaged. He continued with My heart will go on (Titanic) of Celine Dion while Rami took a video about the spontaneous performance and passengers reaction. The video was uploaded on Maan’s YouTube channel on 7 August 2014.
Then what happened was unexpected but rightly deserved after 21 years unbroken deploying his talent and passion for music. Maan rocked the audience by rehashing and revitalizing old-time’s classics and iconic pieces. People all around the world enjoyed his Für Elise video which went viral and was downloaded 17 million times within two weeks, kept being popular tower above 25 million viewing.
After Prague Maan Hamadeh faced of a worldwide success with dynamically increasing thousands of followers. Several offline and online articles range of television, radio and social media interviews, social-life television talk shows ruined mondial at the same time about his talent and amazing performance.
11 September 2014, when he flew to Beirut for a family visit and performance invitations, a great surprise celebration was waiting for Maan at Beirut Rafik Hariri International Airport: ring of followers, friends, family members and a Play Me piano for debuting and spreading happiness by passion-leaded magic fingers.
Overall his spotlighted success and media appearances, Maan’s miracle gave the spirit and impulse to thousands of people world-widely for starting or recalling their piano or other instrument studies. It motivated Maan to make clear his brain in the middle of happiness. However he had social media basics, needed organising more professional and building a support team for right and up-to-date reactions. Fortunately, Maan Hamadeh graduated in computer sciences and advanced user of several technical fields. Maan has had strong collaboration with closest friends who are well educated in several fields as well, enhance Rami El Ghoussainy in operation management, Iyad Fayad in Photography and Video Tech, last but not least Sandra Fayad in Graphic Design. Closest friends and family have given reinforcement from background since beginning till nowadays.
However Maan rocked the world by music, his Technology Consultant career has been continuing as before. He leads business analysis, software implementation, quality assurance and testing projects within the Public Sector, Financial Services, and FMCG & Supply Chain industries at Deloitte Middle East in Dubai day by day.
What happened in and after Prague was more than a sign about Maan’s gold nature (as Indian people calls the pure life talents and missions) to earnestly take into consideration a music career. As his musician brand based on different tasted spontaneous phrasing Maan’s name interwove exceptional ideas and events. He has participated in numerous public and private musical events in Europe and within Middle East. Highlighting just some of these without limitation: Beirut City Center Fashion Week Kick Off (4 November 2014); covers of Top Hits on a Bluthner Piano Crystal Edition in Atlantis, The Palm Dubai, Aquaventure Water park (18 April 2015); Asateer Ramadan Tent Launch in The Atlantis The Palm (16 June 2015), Anghami’s Christmas Gift Box Surprise event in ABC Mall Achrafieh Beirut (22 December 2015) where Maan were unpacked from the Anghami’s gift box playing on grand piano.
Maan Hamadeh is also called upon to compose and play personalised music pieces to piano for special events and celebrations. These creatures mainly have remained within limited or closed audience but without doubt one of Maan’s preferred music activities. Maan Hamadeh shared his unique composer talent in public by own composition and improvisation Only Piano in March 2016 as part of Weekly Videos. From Dubai he is building the grounds to his dream of having own band with his spirit and several tours around the world, release multiple musical albums, spreading happiness via music. Maan is opening himself to connect with the right sponsors and producers to do more musical collaborations.
As a milestone of making his dreams come true, Maan Hamadeh and the Band first full-evening live concert was in The Village Country Club, Samqaniyeh el Chouf, Lebanon (5 August 2016). The venue was chosen in Maan’s homeland as giving utterance to respect the cradle of his musical career. ThePianoMaan’s virtuosic playing was accompanied by his friend and musical partner in Weekly Videos, Wael Al Wirr guitarist and drums as well. The concert was held in addition to international interest and success where the audience enjoyed the emblematic Maan Hamadeh’s Für Elise version in new instrumentation among other different tasted pieces.
Play Me Performances
After Maan Hamadeh’s talent brightly overtopped for millions of people by playing on Play Me piano at Vaclav Havel Airport, he got several invitation to joy and launch public pianos. Public audience enjoyed his different tasted performances in Beirut Rafik Hariri International Airport, in The House of Music Vienna, in Old Town Hall Bratislava, at Duomo Square Milano. Returning to Prague in August 2015 Maan played in Café Neustadt, owned by Ondrey Kobza, the man behind the ‘Pianos in the Streets’ movement.
As a part of Play Me project, Maan Hamadeh was invited to Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport for celebrating the International Music Day (1 October 2015) where he played different Hungarian pieces part of which were the Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2, Brahms Hungarian Dances, Tavaszi Szél folk song. This trip gave him the chance to experience sounding the revolutionary Bogányi grand piano in Aria Hotel Budapest.
Dubai’s first pop-up piano was launched with a performance by Maan Hamadeh and hula-hoop artist Teeba Al Khudairi, who was dancing with a hula hoop to the cheerful notes of Maan’s fusion music on an artistic painted piano by Saudi contemporary artist Majid Alyousef in January 2016. All parts of the project represented love and theme "harmony and flow" including the remixed song Ahwak by Abdel Halim Hafez along with used painting style (Majid Alyousef’s signature style channelling the Bauhaus style and traditional Arabic calligraphy strokes, imprinting love in Arabic).
The celebration of public music has been continued. Public Piano of Dubai Mall was launched in great success of two hours performance also by ThePianoMaan, Maan Hamadeh in April 2016.
Since April 2015 Maan Hamadeh has been staying in contact with followers through Weekly (Friday) Videos. He translates musical ideas with different genres as own taste, mixing actual life sensations to covers. Mostly his musical interpretations come up on the spot when Maan first sit in front of a piano. In process of editing videos what Maan likes to manage by himself supplements the sound harmony with other instruments as cajon and rarely with his rich toned voice as background vocal.
First he uploaded Weekly Videos on Facebook via Instagram which added the technical limits to 15 seconds. As his followers used to ask him for longer adaptations, Maan has started to upload full versions Weekly Videos with Vivo Per Lei for Andrea Bocelli by selecting other popular international and Arabic songs since 16 October 2015. Maan Hamadeh recorded his first guitar accompaniment cover with Wael Al Wirr on 5 November 2015 and keeps going on enriching his music by new instruments and conceptions.
New milestone has arrived into Maan’s music career when he posted his own composition and improvisation Only Piano on 11 March 2016 as Weekly Video. His fans started to mention him as Lebanese Yanni deservedly, however his style is far different than other great artists.
Awards and Recognition
Maan Hamadeh was an honoree in Arouwad Awards Festival 2016 in Beirut as a Lebanese Musician. The recognition is given to preeminent actors, artists, musicians, political and public figures from the Arab World who are pioneers in their fields (meaning of Arabic word “arouwad” is pioneers).
Maan received deservedly this award for being a bridge between different cultures, saving and representing heritage of Lebanese and Arabic music by rethinking songs and mixing twin sounded melodies from classical music and international pieces in his unique style IDT; also for new way of spreading music in Weekly Videos and Play Me projects.
The Arouwad Awards was hosted by Arouwad Magazine and ceremonially passed to honorees on Arouwad Festival in collaboration with one of the top TV stations in Lebanon.
Maan performed in the Award Festival playing a Lebanese music "Helwa Ya Baladi - Dalida" and “Mozart: Turkish March” in his own style.
As Maan Hamadeh has unpretending and open-minded intercultural personality he likes to spend as much time as he can with his family, friends and discovering new cultures, places and culinary attractions. As he grew up having support and great guide from his parents and siblings he finished his studies excellently, speaks English fluently, French advanced and has started Italian above his Arabic native language. Along music his passion is skydiving as he valuates highly freedom in life mainly in spontaneous expressions of his life sensations thru music.