Perfect Pitch: Serene
Updated: Jun 30, 2022
Founder, Hacker, Concert Pianist
Current City: NYC.
Current Job and Entrepreneurial Focus: Founder, Hacker, Concert Pianist currently building "Snowstorm" -- to keep the internet uncensorable.
Notable Prior Jobs:
- First Engineer @ Google Ideas
- Senior Research Fellow, OTF
- Created Snowflake v1, integrated with Tor. Impacted the Ukraine / Russia war
- Being "Serene Pianist"
- Composing Opera for Kanye West
When I Started Performing: 23 (after I quit Google / tech and finally had a piano of my own to work with).
Performing Arts Background: No conservatory or formal training, but somehow rapidly became a concertizing pianist, endorsed Bösendorfer Artist, still touring the world since Covid, solo & with orchestras. Most recent concerto performed: Rachmaninoff's 3rd also the odd cross-genre musical adventure.
How did your performing arts background supercharge your entrepreneurship? Just to begin entering the "classical music world", without the traditional conservatory / institutional background, demands a lot. Focus, discipline, sensitivity, coordination with others, relationship with time, conviction, & courage to "cause impossible things to happen"... too many aspects to enumerate. At any zoom level, one has to produce & execute: whether a concert, a tour, or just ingraining a little passage in one's head while preparing & perfecting the craft in studio. Or gearing up to present to thousands, and ideally, delivering a profound shared experience. The art of playing the piano & becoming a performer reflects the art of learning anything, debugging anything, building & mastering systems, team-building, improvisation, assertion of aesthetic, and therefore ethic, and so on... A lifetime ago, I wrote an essay linking systems programming to pianism, on the technical level. I might share a fragment here: "Just as a high-level language compiles into machine code, which must reliably execute without memory leaks, generating towering call stacks, continuously and concurrently evolving through time and cache layers, system calls, hardware instructions, registers, the informational migration of electrons across transistors... A pianist interprets music notation into a sequence of reliable muscular mechanical movements, ideally without tension or exhaustion, generating towering hierarchies of melodies and harmonies, to describe ineffable colors and cadences in rich layers of frequencies which massage the cochlea, acquire emotional root on limbic systems, generate physiological spine-chilling frisson -- the cathartic migrations of electrons across neurons, unfolding through time as beautiful music." The etymology of the word "concerto" derives from the concept of "striving together". Now I'm building a team: striving together to get the internet itself to strive together, rather than be splintered. To maintain everybody's right to access the global internet, uncensored & uncompromised. The many correspondences between performing arts and entrepreneurship run deep, and the factors supercharge each other.
Favorite Performer: Cortot, Argerich.
Follow this Performer:
Twitter - @kiserene
Instagram - @serenepianist