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Big ideas in the city

entertainment Updated: Apr 02, 2010 14:54 IST
Naomi Canton
Naomi Canton
Hindustan Times
Highlight Story

Award-winning actor and founder of city acting academy, Actor Prepares, Anupam Kher is one of the speakers at the first-ever TEDxMumbai event being held in the city, on Saturday. About 160 people, a mix of scientists, corporates and students have registered to attend the sell-out event, which is a local extension of the famous annual TED Conference that takes place at Long Beach in California every year.

TED, a non-profit organisation, invites the world’s leading thinkers and doers to speak for 18 minutes, at TED in California, with an aim to foster learning, inspiration and wonder in the world. Earlier TED speakers include Bill Gates, Al Gore, Sir Richard Branson, and Gordon Brown and their talks are made available, free at TED.com.

Annual event

TEDGlobal is held each year in Oxford, UK and TEDIndia was launched in India, Mysore, last year. TED has recently created a program called TEDx, which allows people to share a TED-like experience of ideas worth spreading.

Mumbai venture capitalist, Ajay Hattangdi, obtained the license to hold the event, after being inspired by the Mysore event. Apart from Kher, the diverse range of speakers will include Swiss expat Matias Echanove and Indian Rahul Srivastava, who have been working extensively on ways to redevelop Dharavi; Briton Daniel Carroll who’s been living in India for 14 years and specialises in turning around distressed companies, environmentalist Kishore Rithe; Lakshmi Tripathi, organiser of India’s first transgender beauty contest and Thumri expert Dhanashree Pandit-Rai.

They will either speak, or show videos on subjects ranging from how to reverse terminal cancer using diet, deciphering text from ancient India, being an extra in Bollywood and the experience of being an Indian sportsman. “The idea is to offer a new way of thinking about a subject,” Hattangdi says. “We view the audience as participants. There are very few opportunities for people to share ideas and thoughts with others from different fields,” he adds. The presentations will also be put up on YouTube.