24 July, 2021

Nirupama Menon Rao

Diplomat, soprano, bibliophile, foreign ministry spokeswoman and now inspector of foreign missions on her first poetry collection, Rain Rising.

Nirupama Menon Rao
Why poetry?
Because I've always expressed myself through poetry, ever since I was 12.

It's tough to find a publisher for poetry—how did you do it?
The first publisher I showed it to, Rupa, accepted it.

Has it anything to do with your being a former MEA spokesperson?
People know me from my spokesperson days and are curious about the poems.

Does your poetry have anything to do with your spokesperson days?
No, I was a poet long before I was spokesperson.

As a spokesperson was poetry useful?
To a certain extent. Poetry teaches you precision with words and helps hone your instincts to find the right words under pressure.

There is suddenly a lot of creative writing coming out of the mea nowadays?
People like Pavan Verma and Nina Sibal have been writing for years. They are an inspiration.

Which is your first love—music or poetry?
My first love is my profession.

Why do you prefer singing in the Western classical style rather than Indian?
I did learn Carnatic...

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