Jun 11, 2018

At Cannes Lions, the world’s premier festival recognizing creative excellence, thousands of entries pour in from countries worldwide. Behind the scenes, a carefully selected panel of judges reviews the work that will ultimately take home a coveted Cannes Lion.

Joining the ranks of the industry’s most recognized and respected creative professionals, Alok Gadkar, General Manager & Executive Creative Director of Classic Partnership in Dubai, is serving as a juror in the Health & Wellness category this year.

With close to 20 years of experience, Alok has hauled an impressive collection of accolades from Cannes Lions, D&AD, D&AD Impact, One Show, Clio, The Global Awards, Dubai Lynx, Mena Cristal, Abby and AAAi Awards. His career has seen a journey through the industry ranks with stints at Mudra Communications (DDB), Enterprise Nexus, Lowe Mena and Leo Burnett. He has also served on the Grand Jury panel of New York Festivals, Global Awards and KYIV Festival, among others.

We chatted with Alok on all things Cannes, creativity and the work to come. Read the Q&A below.                                                                                                           

To me, simplicity is the key to a successful creative idea.

Alok Gadkar


1. Given the many changes at Cannes Lions this year, what are you most excited about?
Nothing changes if nothing changes, and this is what I’m really excited about. With fewer entries and number of Lions, the stakes are going to be high and competition will be tougher. While the jury is out, it’ll be quite an experience for me to see what goes on in the jury room.

 2. What do you think defines a successful creative idea?

To me, simplicity is the key to a successful creative idea. We’ve seen so many examples of complex scenarios tackled with the simplest of solutions. While I say this, I also want to emphasize that simplicity is also the toughest thing to come up with!

 3. What’s your favorite ad of all time? Why?

Funny thing about having a favorite ad is they keep changing, so there have been many through the years. Speaking of funny, the latest on the list is "The Laughing Horses" from Volkswagen. There’s really nothing there but laughing… by horses — and right now, me as well.

 4. Name three things in your Cannes Jury survival kit.

One, bubble wrap, as it has been scientifically proven to raise levels of calmness and alertness. Two, a jacket. I am told it gets cold despite the heat of the action. And three, fresh meat to feed the hungry Lions.

 5. What are your predictions or insights about your Cannes category?

I have my eyes and heart on several works. The fun is staying in suspense till the official word is out. As I enjoy my pint of Guinness, let me just say, “Goodness comes to those who wait,” so let’s wait for the 18th onwards.

Follow us on #YRCANNES for festival and award updates. Read more about Y&R Cannes Jury members at The Pulse