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Centenary celebration of Royal College Choir


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The Royal College Choir celebrated its 100th anniversary in the year 2019. The glory of a century was celebrated in style at the Lionel Wendt theatre with an extravagant evening of choral music performed by the Royal College Choir accompanied by the Royal College Western Orchestra and also the Royal College Western Brass Band. The audience was amazed with the brilliant showcase of the talents of Royal College choristers.

100-year history

Initiated by Acting Principal Lewis Walker, origins of Royal College Choir traces back to year 1919. During the tenure of the principal Harry L. Reed, the choir won the prestigious R. Meaden Shield for Singing for 10 consecutive years from 1920 to 1931, once with a perfect score of 200/200. The College Anthem ‘School of our Fathers’ composed by Principal Reed made its debut at the Meaden Shield competition on 13 July 1928.

The choir was then trained by Mrs. Reed with the support of Rober C. Edwards. This tradition that started 100 years ago continued decade after decade and the College Choir still continues to sing at all important occasions and most significant out of all being the Annual Carol Service.

Continuing its winning traditions centuries ago, Royal College Choir in recent years is known for dominating the local circuit. It won all Island Choir championship for six continuous years and won a golden diploma followed by a gold medal in Asia Pacific Choir competition in 2017 to qualify for the world Choir game. Teacher in Charge Priyanthi Sudusinghe and the Director Sureka Amerasinghe are the pillars of strength for recent successes of Royal College Choir.

B.P. Sudusinghe to make sure every task large or small was completed systematically and creativity and the commitment of director in charge of the Royal College Choir Sureka Amerasinhghe were the key pillars of grand success of Royal College Choir in local and international circuits.

Winning at the World Choir Games

Pinnacle of Royal College Choir’s recent success was winning three Silver medals at World Choir Games in South Africa held in 2018. Royal College won silver medals in the Youth, Pop and Forklore with accompaniment categories. The world Choir Games, the Olympics of Choral music featured thousands of choirs and a hundred plus countries and was held in the beautiful city of Tshwane, North of Johannesburg. The guidance given by the teacher in charge of the Western Music Society B.P. Sudusinghe to make sure every task large or small was completed systematically and creativity and the commitment of directress in charge of the Royal College Choir Sureka Amerasinghe were the key pillars of grand success of Royal College Choir in local and international circuits.

A century of sound

Royal College Choir led by Meth Hettihewa put up a magnificent performance to echo the glory of a century of choral singing. It featured wonderful variety of music dating from the Baroque Period of Music to the Modern Pop era. From the works of Han Zimmer from the Lion King, to the music of the late king of Pop Michael Jackson to the works of the famous Stevie Wonder and music from the musical Prince of Egypt. The agenda also included an original composed by the Director Sureka Amerasinghe for the Royal College Choir known as ‘A Sri Lankan Choral Fantacy’. Accompanying the choir was the Royal College Western Orchestra trained by B.P. Sudusinghe and conducted by Srimal Weerasekera.

All-island choir competition hosted by the Ministry of Education

The Royal College Choir was named All-island Champions at the All island inter school choir competition for the year 2019.

Festival of Choirs

The Silver jubilee of Festival of Choirs took place on 11 October 2019 at the Bishop’s College Auditorium, and it gave the audience a reason to sit at the edge of their seats, with great choral performances by Asian International School, Elizabeth Moir School, St. Joseph’s College, Ladies’ College, Musaeus College, Visaka Vidyalaya, Bishop’s College and at last but definitely not least, the amazing performance by The Royal College Choir, which put smiles on the faces of the entire audience.

Christmas Carols Service 2019

The Royal College Carol Service was held on 13 December 2019 at the College Main Hall. The event was graced by the bishop of Colombo. The Royal College Choir brought the Christmas spirit alive with singing many traditional carols with a touch of different genres, such as Noel and favourite song of all. It was a mesmerising night with holiday cheer.

Centenary celebrations were organised under guidance provided to the Royal Choir by Principal of Royal College, B.A. Abeyrathne, the Senior Master of Clubs and Societies T. Amarathunga, the Senior Games Master M.A.M. Riyaz. Western Music Society Chair Yehan Rajapaksa, Choir Leader Meth Hettihewa, Choir Assistant Leader Pavan Abeysinghe led the organising effort with all choristers, members of western music society and parents putting their hearts and souls for the once in a century celebration which was concluded in grand style in 2019.

 


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