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MMSCENE Exclusive Interview with Alban Sagiaku

Alban shares his career path, his heritage and its Influence on career and perspective, and more

Interview with Alban Sagiaku
Interview with Alban Sagiaku

Alban Sagiaku‘s journey into the world of modeling is as inspiring as it is unconventional. Discovered during his high school years in a small town in Greece, Alban was initially focused on a career as a professional athlete in track and field. However, a chance encounter with another model ignited his curiosity about the fashion industry. Despite initial skepticism and nerves, Alban’s first test shoot revealed his natural affinity for the camera. Over the past four years, Alban has become a prominent figure in the international modeling scene, working with prestigious agencies across cities like London, Athens, Barcelona, and Shanghai. His experiences have enriched him both professionally and personally, as he navigates diverse cultural landscapes and industry practices. Notably, his campaign with Le Coq Sportif in South Korea stands out as a cherished project, intertwining his passion for athletics with his modeling career. Alban’s resilience, maturity, and dedication to his craft have been pivotal in his success, supported by a strong network of family and his mother agency, Muumaa Models. As he looks ahead, Alban aspires to break into the American market and even explore acting.


For this exclusive MMSCENE interview, photographer Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos captures Alban Sagiaku, with lightning direction by Simeon Asenov. In charge of styling is Theophile Hermand, make up is by Lee Will, hair by Beyana Angelova  and nails are done by Julia Hopkins.For this session, Alban is wearing selected pieces from Celine and Sebago

full look CELINE / photography © Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos for MMSCENE
Jacket and Trousers CELINE / photography © Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos for MMSCENE

Can you share the story of how you were discovered? Where were you and what were you doing at the time?
How I got discovered? It was 4 years ago when I was still at high school in a small town in Greece. Another model approached me and suggested that I should model. I didn’t take it seriously at first because at the time my focus was to be a professional athlete running track and field. But I was curious.
I remember how my first test shoot was so intense and nerve-wracking but I loved being in front of the camera! I’m so glad that I took a chance and then this whole crazy modelling journey began!

What were your initial thoughts and feelings about entering the modelling industry? Did anything surprise you?
I think in the beginning I didn’t appreciate how many people were involved behind the scenes. I was so shocked how a team of people like the photographer, hair, make-up artists, and stylists come together to create and transform a subject from one shoot to the next. It always made me feel special being in that chair and I was so excited to see what the next job would be.

full look CELINE / photography © Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos for MMSCENE

You’re represented by agencies in multiple cities around the world. How does working with agencies in different countries like London, Athens, Barcelona, and Shanghai vary? What unique experiences does each bring?
I love working with agencies in different countries. The biggest appeal is how every job is unique like every country operates differently in terms of how their team operates and I love seeing their individual cultures and references within their work.

You’ve had the opportunity to work in China. How did you adapt to the cultural differences there both professionally and personally?
Working in China was truly a beautiful experience. I would say that the language barrier was the biggest challenge. But through exploring different cities, I was able to learn more about Chinese culture and me trying and failing to communicate back in conversations!

full look CELINE / photography © Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos for MMSCENE

Can you tell us about one of your favourite modelling projects or campaigns so far? What made it memorable for you?
That’s a hard question but I would have to choose the Le Coq Sportif campaign I did in South Korea. The team were amazing. My favourite part of the shoot was being on the athletics track and jumping the hurdles. It’s been my favourite sport since before I became a model and so it was a full circle moment.

What are the most valuable lessons you’ve learned from working internationally?
Living on my own and away from family has taught me resilience and maturity. Modelling isn’t easy and being at a young age and having to become an adult not seeing your loved ones for more than 6-9 months at a time is tough and requires a lot of sacrifice.

full look CELINE / photography © Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos for MMSCENE

Reflecting on your career so far what are some highlights or milestones that stand out to you?
It has to be my first magazine. I think it does something to every model when they see themselves in their first magazine. It’s nerve-racking but when you see the result it’s magic and so worth it.

Looking forward what are your goals or dreams in the modelling industry? Are there any specific designers or brands you aspire to work with?
Some of my future goals include a cover for a big publication and also being represented in markets that I am not currently. I always wanted to try to break America and maybe one day be an actor when I’m no longer modelling as well.
My mother agency Muumaa Models and I work very closely as a team and that’s why my career has been successful. It takes two and loads of teamwork.

full look CELINE / photography © Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos for MMSCENE

What advice would you give to young people who are considering a career in modelling?
Be prepared as it is not that easy. It’s rewarding and it can change your life very quickly if you are lucky but if you think that modelling is easy and it will solve all your problems it won’t! It’s a job like any other.

How has your heritage influenced your career and outlook on the modelling industry?
Coming from a Mediterranean background we learn how to have tough skin from a young age. I have a wonderful support network around me and apart from my agents my beautiful family. They taught me to stay true to myself and to stand my ground. I have been raised with the mentality of putting in the hard work and 100% to anything that I do. I think that has helped me a lot in my career.

Trousers CELINE, Shoes SEBAGO / photography © Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos for MMSCENE

Photography – Menelaos Triantafyllopoulos @mtriantafyllopoulos
Lighting Director – Simeon Asenov @ph.simeon
Model – Alban Sagiaku @albansagiaku
Agency – Muumaa Models @muumaamodels
Styling – Theophile Hermand @theophilehermand
Hair Stylist – Beyana Angelova @beyana.angelova
Makeup Artist – Lee Will @_leewill
Nail Artist – Julia Hopkins

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