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Sri Lanka-Viet Nam Friendship Concert

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  • Cultural diplomacy at its highest levels 

Celebrating the 70th Anniversary of Independence of Sri Lanka and 48 years of diplomatic relations between Viet Nam and Sri Lanka, the Sri Lankan Embassy together with the Sun Symphony Orchestra (SSO) and in coordination with Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Viet Nam, organised a Classical Music Concert at the Viet Nam National Academy of Music on the evening of 23 June.

The Concert brought together world renowned Sri Lankan and Vietnamese musicians depicting the highest levels of musical professionalism. It is the first time in the world that Sri Lankan and Vietnamese classical musicians played together on one stage.

The Sri Lankan musicians were Rohan De Silva, Concert Pianist, Tharanga Goonetilleke, Soprano and Maestro Dr. Lalanath de Silva, Composer and Conductor. This is the first time that all three Sri Lankan musicians performed in Viet Nam.

From the Vietnamese side, there were Tenors Nguyen Anh Vu and Nguyen Tuan Anh together with the Sun Symphony Orchestra (SSO). The SSO is a newly formed professional orchestra and comprises not only Vietnamese, but also several eminent foreign musicians from 23 countries. The Music Director and Principal Conductor of SSO is Maestro Olivier Ochanine.

The program included several arias, including Deshamanya Kala Keerthi Dr. Premasiri Khemadasa’s “Shreya” from the Opera Agni, sung by Tharanga Goonetilleke, Soprano, Giacomo Puccini’s duet “O Soave Fanciulla’ from the Opera La Boheme sung by Tharanga Goonetilleke, Soprano and Nguyen Anh Vu, Tenor, Beethoven’s 1st Piano Concerto with Rohan De Silva as soloist, a well-known Vietnamese song - “Bài ca Hà Nội” sung by Tenor Nguyen Tuan Anh, a new Overture “The Dancers” by Maestro Lalanath de Silva, and Mozart’s Overture to his opera, the Magic Flute.

The Sri Lankan musicians and SSO performed on a gratis basis. The Concert was supported by the Sun Symphony Orchestra, Viet Nam Performing Arts Centre of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Viet Nam, Pan Pacific Ha Noi Hotel, Viet Nam National Academy of Music and several Sri Lankan professionals and business personnel in Viet Nam and Sri Lanka.

The Embassy of Sri Lanka in Viet Nam considers that it is people-to-people contacts that ultimately paves the way for understanding and building trust, essential precursors to achieving bilateral economic diplomacy and policy objectives. 

In Viet Nam, where people have nurtured much taste and passion for western classical music, what better way to make a true and sincere connection, appealing to the Vietnamese soul through music! 

Besides, there is no doubt that this Concert was one of a kind and a lifetime’s opportunity for the classical music lovers of Viet Nam. 

The Embassy organised a pre-Concert informal reception to selected guests and it is noteworthy that the 700-seat Concert Hall was almost full. 

There was much coverage for the event in local media, mainstream and social media as well, with VTC broadcasting several video clips form the event on evening news on 24 June. 


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