Sunday, November 18, 2007

AR Rahman Concert in Delhi

What would you need to do if you wanted to listen to AR Rahman, Hariharan, Chitra, Kailash Kher and Rapper Blaze in Delhi. You had to go to the mega concert that was held last evening in Delhi. If you were a PepsiCo employee you got to see the show. You had to find your place among the 25,000 fans who ranged from six year olds to their grandparents (children below five years old were not allowed in).

AR Rahman came across as an immensely talented composer who has yet to make the transition to being a huge entertainer. He is an artiste who just focuses on creating great music and leaves the flash and glitz to others. I love the way he has transformed the face of Bollywood music by bringing in new sounds and singers with each venture.

When the concert started with Rahman singing the operatic overture from the film Guru

"Jage hain der tak hamein
kuchh der soney do
Thodi si raat aur hai subah to hone do.
Adhe adhure khwab jo pure na ho sake
Ek bar phir se neend mein woh khwab boney do".

Translated that would mean

"I have been up till late, let me sleep some more
Let me dream again and complete those incomplete wishes"

Rahman's voice left me with goose bumps as he closed his eyes to focus on the music that draws from the traditional Operas. Cut to the song Maiyya Maiyya from the same film, and you can smell the influence of Turkish music as clearly as the rich notes of their coffee!

For me the highlight was to see the legendary Sivamani perform. The percussionist with his trademark bandana created magic with the solo performance where he drummed without missing a beat even as he twirled his drumsticks and threw them in the air as the double bass drum thumped away. He has used even the humble wok used to make biriyani, to create music!! According his official website

"Siva was adept with his drumsticks even at the tender age of 7 and went on to give his first stage performance at the age of 12. "

He led a troupe of twenty dhols to give us a glimpse of a track from the yet unreleased Bollywood film Jodha Akbar.

Allah Rakha Rahman was born AS Dilip Kumar on 6th January 1967 and has played keyboards for Ilaiyaraja. He has a degree in Western Classical Music from the Trinity College of Music at Oxford University. Last evening he played his hits from Hindi, Tamil and even English compositions. We got glimpses of Rahman playing the synthesizer and even a grand piano. The only thing that jarred was the sound system that was truly awful. The system did not do justice to the master of music.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

PepsiCo Shakiras

The newspaper Mint in its issue dated November 5, 2007 provides some statistics on the growing focus of organizations to hire more and more women. PepsiCo features in the 10th spot in India – thanks to the PepsiCo’s worldwide focus on Diversity and Inclusion. With Indra Nooyi being the most powerful woman in US, now it is our turn to celebrate. Over to the Diwali Party. Here are glimpses of our Diwali Party on 2nd November.

No, it is not a group of Shaimak Dawar Performers; these are the same colleagues you will see in the offices of PepsiCo.
From Left: Reshmi Tikmani, Surabhi Bist, Suweshi Sharma, Manika Sahni, Himani Bahuguna, Vidhisha, Aarti Shouri and yours truly. Our very own Charu was the co-host for the evening.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Indra Nooyi with Women Leaders of PepsiCo

Diwali with a Difference at Pune

This Diwali Pune Plant decided to celebrate it in a different way by inviting BVJ Education Institute (an Orphanage for street children) to the Plant premises. Kids had a great time making plasticine models, dancing and playing. A talent show was also organized followed by prize distribution.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Inviting Nominations for the Kurkure Moment of 2007

We are institutionalizing a Kurkure Moment of the Year Award. The HR group was recently at Rishikesh for a rafting trip. Thats when we came up with that idea. At the end of a hard day of having fun - what with beach volleyball, long adda sessions in the tents on the beach, after moonlight treks in the jungle (where Umang wore a Halloween mask and gave Manvi the shock of her life), we got chatting around the bonfire on the beach about what were some of the craziest moments in our office that had us in splits. Here is the nomination from the HR team:

Colleague says to Bhagyashree aka Bags of our Marketing department, "Hey, are you on Orkut?"
Bhagyashree responds, "Nahi Yaar, I am on Kurkure."

Thus was born the idea of collecting the Kurkure Moment from other colleagues and other offices.

Who can nominate: Anyone. It does not have be limited to just Frito employees. We promise to be unbiased and fair.

How do you nominate someone: Just send us the incident with details and possibly a photo of the moment or of the person if you can. Mail it to
Please put the subject of your email as "Kurkure Moment Nomination". Please mention the name of the organization and location where the incident happened.
What kind of incidents qualify: Hey, anything that spiced up the and brought everyone together. So a fun quip, a practical prank ... a Bakra... anything that is a pur Kurkure Moment. Talking of Bakras, I would love to share the Bakra we played on the HR team during the Annual HR Meet. But my lips are sealed. Ask Umang or Charu what it was all about. Or ask Krishna about the Bakra he played on the gang during the bus ride back from Rishikesh. That was a "bloody nasty" trick he played on everyone. Ask me, I was victim too.