“Nirupama Rao has served as India’s Foreign Secretary … been ambassador to countries like China and Peru and has also served as the High Commissioner to Sri Lanka,” writes Simantini Dey in Wednesday’s (4/24) News18.com (New Delhi, India). “In July 2018, Rao … founded the South Asia Symphony Foundation (SASF), along with her husband, Sudhakar Rao, through which she is bringing together musicians from different South Asian countries to perform as a part of the South Asian Symphony Orchestra (SASO). Rao is currently in Mumbai busy preparing for the [April 26] debut performance of SASO in a concert titled Chiragh [by] a group of almost 70 musicians from countries like Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal and India…. Rao spoke about Chiragh, her future plans for SASO, about India’s relationship with neighbours like Pakistan and China as well as about the recent terror attacks in Sri Lanka.” With SASO, says Rao, “For the first time in history, the Kashmiris, and the Afghans are playing together in an orchestra like this. They are transcending borders, politics, and divisions, and that is, in itself, a very powerful exposition of what music can be.”

Posted April 25, 2019   

In photo: The South Asia Symphony Orchestra rehearses for its inaugural concert in Mumbai, India with conductor Viswa Subbaraman. Photo by Nirmal Harindran