T he 17th Annual Nobel Peace Prize Concert on December 11 in Oslo, Norway, will see A.R. Rahman joining a star-studded line-up of musicians in a live performance. The galaxy includes Barry Manilow, Jamiroquai, India.Arie, Florence + The Machine, Herbie Hancock, Robyn, Elvis Costello and Colbie Caillat. Academy Award-winning actor Denzel Washington will host the event, which will be broadcast around the world.  

Rahman, currently in the middle of his world tour, will perform for the first time in South Africa this month. Rahman's performance will be part of the festivities relating to the 150th anniversary of Indian presence in the nation and caps off a national celebration of Indian culture in South Africa. The tour kicks off on November 20 at The Sun City Superbowl and travels to Cape Town on November 24 at the Grand Arena. He will also perform on November 26 at Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban.

Says Rahman: “It feels really good that Indians are included in such functions. I feel it's worth the sacrifices I've made in the past decade, exploring not-so-safe choices in my musical career, and being adventurous…”

Lots on his plate

V ersatility is probably Bharath's middle name. Since his debut in 2003 with Boys, he has acted in more than 18 films; three more are in the pipeline. He's played them all — from a city slicker to a rustic hero. And, it is expected that Thiruttani, Vaanam and director GNR Kumaravelan's Yuvan Yuvathy will give him some more scope to exploit his talent. “ Thiruttani is a typical Perarasu film with all the commercial elements. But, there is a message here for the youth — to fight injustice. In Vaanam, a remake of Telugu film Vedam, I play a rock star in a band. It is not a typical one-hero film. There are five of us who come from different parts of the country and finally meet up. Yuvan Yuvathy, which will probably be released first, for Pongal, is about a village youth who has aspirations to live a city and embrace modernity and all its attendant luxuries. His father, however, wants him to remain in the village. How he deals with the situation and emerges winner is what the film is all about,” says Bharath.

nikhil raghavan