This time last year, the Brooke Bond Red Label 6 Pack Band won the Glass Lion Grand Prix for challenging the social stigma of being transgender in India. Today, Unilever announced a collaboration with UN Women to convene with industry leaders to accelerate progress.
The Unstereotype Alliance aims to tackle how the industry can affect positive cultural change by using the power of advertising to help shape perceptions reflective of realistic, non-biased portrayals of women, men and the LGBTI community.
Mindshare and Cannes Lions delighted and surprised the audience with the Brooke Bond Red Label 6 Pack Band performing live at the ‘Talent without Prejudice’ session at Cannes on Monday afternoon.
The transgender band formed to break the social stigma, harassment and alienation of India’s transgender community, (known as hijaras) reminded us all of the power brands and the industry can have in challenging social stigmas and creating a more just and peaceful society for all.
The six performers, who had never seen an aeroplane before, let alone stepped on one as VIPs, appeared humbled and overwhelmed by being in Cannes and expressed what a life changing initiative this campaign was for them 12 months on.
The move is a first from any agency in India. The band, whose members include Fida Khan, Ravina Jagtap, Asha Jagtap, Chandni Suvarnakar, Komal Jagtap and Bhavika Patil, performed their hearts out at the Debussy Theatre, reminding us all that talent is so far beyond gender-specific.
The session seminar focused on what it takes for talent to trump prejudice and rise to the top. It was clear the first step is to have a champion, someone in power, male or female to support the cause.
Prashanth Kumar, CEO of Mindshare South Asia, said it was an honour to have the Brooke Bond Red Label 6 Pack Band live on this global stage.
“It’s been a fabulous journey for all of us in India, and this is certainly one of the firsts – a great idea being showcased on the international stage,” he said.
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