Hitting the notes of success

Young achiever

Mritynjay Sharma, a B.Com student of Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC), holds the official world record for playing piano for the longest time. He set the record in October 2015, breaking the previous world record of the Polish pianist Romuald Koperski who played the instrument for 103 hour.

The 19-year-old played the piano for 127 hours 8 min 38 sec, taking a break of 20 minutes in between. Metrolife spoke to the young achiever who shares more about the experience, his life and goals.

Excerpts:

You are a Guinness Book of Record holder. How’s the feeling?
It feels inspiring to hold the world record title for the country. I always wanted to contribute something which could exhibit to the world about the Indian strength and belief to achieve milestones. With tireless support from my family, mentors and SRCC fraternity, India now holds this great title.

When did you start planning for it?
I started dreaming for this record in January 2014. Every step in the initial days was isolative, but I had to plan the roadmap for this dream. My music mentor, Shri Sudhanshu Bahuguna helped me to believe that dream was possible to achieve and made me able to play for the longest that world had ever seen.

What all went into creating this record?
I was the lazy one in my family, so obviously they didn’t believe in my dream, first. People around me, made fun. You can get coaching for CA, IAS but you can’t attend classes that teach you how to attain the habit of sleeplessness. No one can teach you how to deal with stubborn sleep. You have to listen to your intuition. I had to learn the habit of sleeping less. It took me four months to adapt the habit, mentally, physically and psychologically. My human performance mentor, Dr. Priti Rishi Lal (Faculty Lady Irwin College) took care of my health-related issues and made sure I was well physically, mentally and emotionally.

How did you use to prepare?
I believe that the process of preparation is greater than achieving the moment. How fortunate I was to do the work I love 24*7. Initially, it was tough to sit for four-five hours at a stretch because I didn’t know what exactly has to be played for the record. But I played for 20-24 hours in one strain three times. Knowing how to do something is enough to pump your confidence, later you require practice only. I did 72 practice sessions of 40-100 hours which helped me play 32 Indian classical music raags. I cherish the moments of those preparatory calls I made to my mentors for support. Those were dream days which I lived with my whole college fraternity.

What role your family played in this journey?
The journey became easy once my family started believing in me. They believe that crisis of resources cannot defeat aspiration. And that’s exactly what happened in my case, I practiced in a 10 square yard room, and I do not know how my family slept through the nights I practiced. Every morning at 3 am my mother used to make porridge for me and my father took lot of debts to run my immediate expenses. I must mention Billy Gupta, alumni of SRCC batch of 1964, who with all his batch mates helped my family. Through this interview, I want to say something to my family – No matter how hard it was, you made it easy. You sacrificed everything for me. I promise I’ll keep doing the work which makes you proud.

What next are you aiming at?
I want to get the ‘Most piano hits in one minute’ record title for my country. This record is currently held by Hungarian pianist Bence Peter who hit 765 key in one minute. Unfortunately, I do not have a grand piano and my family cannot afford to purchase it. I hope with some supportive hands, I hope to bring this title soon.

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