first time I saw Vinod
perform was at a qualifying round for a karaoke championship
recently and his showmanship was spell binding.
is blessed with the ability to attract one's attention and keep it
when he is on stage and that's exactly what he did with the audience
rendition of Will Smith's I'm Coming, which he sang that night, was
lively, funky and entertaining and had me thinking, 'this guy is
really good; he is great!'
Vinod's upcoming CD, which he is doing with his partner Denver
Arendze is bound to be a hit - Denver is into ballads while Vinod is
great at hip hop and given the way these guys perform and their
inborn musical talent, the combination is sure to be outstanding.
two guys have been singing for as long as they can remember despite
constraints such as having to travel to Colombo from Kandy, where
they are based when they want to complete a track.
is hard to do a complete track in Kandy, there are no facilities. As
a result, we have to come to Colombo, which takes time," they
how he joined up with Denver, Vinod says, "We have known each
other from year one in school and it all changed in 2000 when we
took part in the Showboat Karaoke Championship. We took part and I
won, while Denver and his group was chosen as first runners up. We
joined up after that."
Denver, "I went solo in 2001 and Vinod was solo all along. We
started performing together in 2002."
the two guys are a team and have a number of original songs to their
name. In addition, they are working on their CD, which will most
probably be released this year.
CD covers all kinds of music styles and it is for all kinds of
people - a mix of hip hop and ballads," said Vinod.
the two guys write their own tracks, Ranga Jagoda composes/records
them and according to Vinod and Denver, "He corrects our
mistakes and we consider him a teacher."
has been singing since he was quite young while Vinod focused his
attention on music in a big way after winning the Showboat
Vinod's life on stage began in school when as the president of the
interact club, he had to take part in a lot of events. "That's
what pushed me on to the stage to begin with," he says.
performed in college for shows as well but he says the Showboat
championship changed his life and made him want to do his own tracks
in a professional manner.
asked about how their families feel about their life in music, both
burst out saying, "Our parents have been superb! They have been
backing us and supporting us from the very beginning."
duo, past pupils of St. Anthony's College, Kandy, plan to have shows
around the island in the future as well and to put out a video in
Lankan duo off to Shanghai
and Gajan, the talented and popular musical duo, have been selected
to represent Sri Lanka at the Seventh Asia Singing Competition, to
be held from October 31 to November 4.
duo, known for their unique style, will be singing two songs at the
finals of the competition which will be held on November 4:
Nimeshayak (For A Moment) and You've Been Warned.
was written by Shaheeka Sahid, with the rap lyrics written by Gajan
and the song was composed by Ranga Jagoda. Ranga will also be
accompanying the duo to Shangai, China where the competition is
Been Warned was written by Gajan and Nilukshi Wickremage, and
composed by Yohan Rajapakse.
songs are from the duo's debut alum, which is due to be launched in
the near future, and will consist of 10 tracks.
from the two songs that will be performed at the competition, the CD
will also feature another recent release by the duo titled Ennal
is a Tamil song and the title means 'yes I can.' It is a song about
never giving up in life and succeeding, a motivational song,"
said Gajan. B. H. Abdul Hamid is also featured in the song.
about the two songs the duo will perform at the competition, Gajan
said that while the songs were released a few months ago, it is only
after the duo was selected for the competition that the songs
started receiving airplay.
media should support the local artistes a lot more, not just the
recognised artistes but the ones who are not as recognised or
established in the music scene. Upcoming talent should be given more
opportunities. Sri Lankans should promote Sri Lankan talent - who
else would do it otherwise?" he said.
said that while Sri Lanka is known for cricket around the world and
companies rush to do things for cricket, they should also put money
into the music scene so that Sri Lanka would be recognised for its
music as well.
a song or music video is very expensive and the music industry needs
people to support it. I would like to thank Arundathi Sri
Renganathan who is behind our going to Shangai, Rukshan Lokuge,
Yohan Rajapakse, Ranga Jagoda and our parents, families and fans for
all their support and also Thai Airways, our official carrier for
the competition," he said.
duo's upcoming album is unique: it consists of songs in all three
languages. Some songs are a combination of English and Sinhala but
they have also introduced Tamil in their songs, which enable the
songs to reach a wider section of society and can be played on any
radio or TV station in the country.
and Roman influences
Lakshman de Silva
Augustan age dominates the idea of Latin literature when
of a high standard flourished. The greatest epic poet of the
Romans was Virgil (70-19 BC) whose Aeneid far outshone all other
efforts at epic poetry.
great as Virgil is, modern readers might also find acceptable others
like Homer, Ovid, Properties, Catullus, Horace, Juvenal - great
names in their own right. Roman comedy in the hands of Plautus and
Terence also reached great heights.
the writing of history and in political thought and the
administration of cities and empires, Roman literature has left its
greatest mark. A History Of The Twelve Caesars is worth the reader's
Latin output was to influence the greater part of Europe for nearly
12 centuries till almost the reformation.
from the writers already mentioned, it is also worthy to mention
Marcus Aurelius (AD 121-180). He succeeded to the Roman Empire in
161 and by that time he was known as a great stoic philosopher and
it looked as if Plato's dream of a philosopher emperor would
materialise in his reign. But his reign was marked by disasters and
wars. His meditations, which he wrote in Greek and not in Latin,
were written mostly in army encampments from the battlefields. They
are the thoughts of a lonely man bearing a heavy burden, and touch
the modern spirit in man. His themes are simple - an absolute trust
in providence, a faith in reason, and a sense of the insignificance
of human affairs before the immensities of time and space.
Augustine (354 to 430 AD) was a Christian Latin writer, who
pioneered the first autobiography in his Confessions. It is
considered the greatest masterpiece in Latin next to Virgil's Aeneid.
self-torturing autobiography has been one of the best-loved books of
the world - for its frankness of expression, and its arrival at
Augustine claimed to have written (three years before his death) 93
literary works, five books on philosophy and nearly 200 works of a
polemic nature, apart from his sermons and letters. All except 10
titles have survived. But for the general reader of today, nothing
but his Confessions is of interest and value.
makings of a director
no ordinary director
teledramas. But his love for the ancient and traditional
history of Sri Lanka led him to direct one of the most unusual and
thought provoking teledramas of all times. His name is Thusitha
Jayawardhane, director of Sisila Ima, a teledrama presently aired on
to The Sunday Leader, Jayawardhane said Sisila Ima is different from
other teledramas because it deals with what happens inside a human
being's mind. "Due to the pressures of society, many people
cannot express their true feelings. This teledrama is based on a
story of a young male doctor and a nature lover who befriends an old
woman near Weligama Oya," says Jayawardhane.
to the Jayawardhane, the old woman is an expert in native medicine
and cures those who cannot be treated with Western medicine. The
doctor on the pretext of learning the secrets of this art pretends
to be in love with the woman and moves into her Walauwa.
unknown to the doctor, he genuinely falls in love with the old
woman. The doctor's personal life gets disrupted, as he is to marry
a girl from Colombo. What follows is a chaotic situation where the
doctor cannot decide which woman he wants to settle down with as he
is in love with both of them.
father was a poet and an author of books and his mother, an English
teacher. But according to Jayawardhane, it was his mother's
influence that made him take an interest in the history of Sri
mother taught me the basics of history when I was schooling. This
was the initial stage and the start of my career in films and
teledramas," says Jayawardhane. Having successfully passed his
grade five scholarship examination, Jayawardhane joined Royal
College where he was exposed to the many dramas taking place at the
Nava Ranga Theatre situated in the college premises.
interest in musicals and dramas made me stay back after school to
watch them take place at the theatre. At the same time my mother
advised me on what films I should watch," explained
then took on certain roles in stage dramas while still a junior at
Royal College. Having learned the ropes in stage dramas,
Jayawardhane was finally in a position to direct his own stage plays
as a senior student at Royal College. It was at this time in his
life that Jayawardhane was introduced to prominent drama artistes.
despite his love for the arts, Jayawardhane pursued his higher
studies by choosing to do engineering. "I did not forget my
directing. But I soon found out that I could not handle my
engineering as well as my directing simultaneously," explained
time had finally come for Jayawardhane to decide what he really
wanted to pursue as a career in life. "I knew the path I had to
take. At this time I knew prominent film star Tony Ranasinghe. It
was Ranasinghe who introduced me to Dr. Sarath Amunugama. Having
realised Jayawardhane's interest in drama and cinema, Dr. Amunugama
introduced him as a writer to the Kala paper. The Kala paper dealt
with cinema issues and I was happy working there," Jayawardhane
while on an assignment to interview prominent Assistant Director for
films and teledramas, Nilendra Deshapriya, Jayawardhane was invited
by Deshapriya to work with him in directing films. "In 1983 I
started working with Deshapriya," says Jayawardhane. For the
next 12 years Jayawardhane worked with Deshapriya in learning the
finer points in television, teledrama and film directing.
to Jayawardhane, it was Deshapriya who finally told him that it was
time for him to direct his own creation. Davala Kethu, a love story
between an old man (who looks after a cemetery) and a young Tamil
girl was produced and directed by Jayawardhane.
won the Best Youth Director Award in 1996 for Davala Kethu, while
Indika Upamali won the Best Youth Actress Award for the same
teldrama. His next production after a period of five years was
has many plans that include directing another teledrama and film.
not for the help and support extended by my Producer, Sunil
Rathnayake, ITN Chairman, Newton Gunaratne, Main Actress Malini
Fonseka, the cast and technical staff, Sisila Ima would not have
been possible," added Jayawardhane.