Nirupama Rao, India’s former foreign secretary announced she is setting up a foundation to promote cultural synergies and dialogue in South Asia. The diplomat is also a singer and in her retirement she has actively pursued that interest of having a band and being part of performances. Talking of the foundation on Facebook, Nirupama Rao said, “My husband, Sudhakar, and I are forming a Trust called the South Asia Symphony Foundation (SASF). The inspiration has come from my years in diplomacy and what I saw as a felt need for providing a platform to promote more dialogue, cultural synergy, and friendly understanding among the youth of the eight countries in South Asia, including India.”

My approach to life has always been : dare to dream

She added the need for cultural diplomacy for peace in the region.”The aim of SASF is to encourage greater cultural integration for the cause of peace in our region of South Asia, through the medium of music and the creation of a South Asian Symphony Orchestra. The Foundation will hold music workshops, master classes, lectures and training in orchestral music for young musicians and to facilitate training of these young individuals by internationally renowned master teachers of orchestral music. We will aim at fostering artistic talent and creativity among these young musicians of promise.”

She is truly invested in music. Over the last few years she has talked about that journey and also released her first commercial album, entitled “Peace is My Dream”, produced by the Peninsula Studios in New Delhi in December 2017. “We will organize performances of the South Asian Symphony Orchestra in various cities of India and South Asia, as also the rest of the world. In due course, we will enable the development of orchestral repertoire and performance of classical and indigenous music from South Asia.”

She is truly invested in music. Over the last few years she has talked about that journey and also released her first commercial album, entitled “Peace is My Dream”

Nirupama always wanted to be a diplomat and she was about 12 when she decided she would work to be in the Indian Foreign Service. She India’s Ambassador to the United States, China and Sri Lanka with stints in Russia as well. In July 2009, she became the second woman (after Chokila Iyer) to hold the post of India’s Foreign Secretary, the head of the Indian Foreign Service.

She is a champion of women’s rights. As she makes this announcement she says, “My approach to life has always been : dare to dream.”

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