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Galle Music Festival 2014

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Sevalanka Foundation, together with Royal Norwegian Embassy, Rikskonsertene and Aru Sri Art Theatre bring back the Galle Music Festival for the third time. The Galle Music Festival is the sister event of the Jaffna Music Festival and has been taking place since December 2009 around the Galle Fort. Each year the festival showcases an eclectic array of music including folk, contemporary, classical and fusion to name a few performed by local and international bands. This year the festival is incorporating a separate component for school children in the Southern Region, where children studying various performing arts and interested children can actively experience and participate at specially organised workshops. At a media briefing held recently at Taj Samudra Sevalanka Foundation Director Program Kaushalya Navaratne Pereira announced the program line-up for this year which comprises of three components: Children’s Music Festival, the main Galle Music Festival and the Colombo Concert. “We are expecting around 1500 students to take part at the Children’s Music Festival and these students will represent Western, Northern, Southern Provinces as well as the plantation areas. The main music festival in Galle Fort will feature 10 local acts and five international acts. This year we are taking the Colombo concert to an open-air location to increase the number of audience and it will take place at the Galle Face Green,” Pereira further explained. Sharing the aims and objectives of the music festival Royal Norwegian Embassy Counsellor Dagny Mjos stated that the Norwegian government this year has allocated a sum of $ 300,000 in terms of musician exchange programs: “We hope that musical festivals of this nature will encourage exchange between musicians and useful workshops can be conducted to share their knowledge in music and the performing arts.” Voicing out her thoughts about the festival Aru Sri Art Theatre Artistic Director Kalasoori Arunthathy Sri Ranganathan stated: “This year’s festival will be the fifth event we are organising in collaboration and entrance for the festival will be free of charge. The Galle and Jaffna music festivals have been a testimony of the increasing success of the events that have taken place. We hope that the festival will evolve to a meeting point for all artistes.” Ranganathan further explained that the festival will also comprise of Dancing, Drumming and Vocal training workshops and the organisers have planned to present an award to a person who has contributed an exceptional service toward uplifting children’s art. She also informed that a sound engineering workshop will be conducted by a professional from Norway. Performing artistes at the Galle Music Festival: International Groups: Ten Sing (Norway), Shironamhin (Bangladesh), Grupo Roda Viva (Brazil), Donn Bhat and Passenger Revelator (India) and Sabreen Association for Artistic Development (Palestine) Local Groups: Kolitha Bhanu and the troupe, Nondi Nadagam – Batticaloa, Thriloka, Oriental Music Orchestra, Sokari – Dambulla, Tony Hassan and Orchestra – Malay, Isai Nadagam – Jaffna, Naadro, Natanda and Marians. The five international groups will perform at the Colombo Concert along with local acts Ranwala Brigade, Sangamam and Naadro with Ruwan Weerasekara. For further information on the Galle Music Festival 2014, visit: www.gallemusicfestival.org. Pix by Lasantha Kumara

 Oriental Music Chamber Orchestra performance

Throughout history music has united people together from various backgrounds. Music plays a major role in our society today; not only does it perform the role of a universally acknowledged uniting factor, but also, it plays the role of a universal healer. For the second time in Sri Lanka a national multi-ethnic oriental orchestra will be held on 12 March at the Rama Krishna Auditorium at Ramakrishna Road, Colombo 06 from 6:30 p.m. onwards. Following the success of the 2012 inaugural session of Sri Lanka’s national multi-ethnic oriental youth orchestra which consisted of 100 artistes; this year’s event will bring to life the two musical cultures of the ethnicities Carnatic and Hindustani on one platform. This special evening of Oriental Music Chamber Orchestra will showcase diverse ethnic and regional musical traditions that exist in different parts of the country. Performances by young and talented oriental music artistes from different districts of Sri Lanka, representing various ethnicities will come together on one platform at this rare occasion with heart-warming music. The concert will also feature performances by renowned international artistes from Brazil (Grupo Roda Viva), Bangladesh (Shironamhin) and India (Donn Bhat). The Oriental Music Chamber Orchestra is also expected to perform at this year’s Galle Music Festival along with the other invited international artistes. The project will bring Sinhala, Tamil, Muslim and Burgher artistes to perform together on one stage and respect one another’s cultures, ethnicities and religions. The participants will gain a better understanding of the diverse musical traditions existing in Sri Lanka. The event is organised by the Institute of Human Excellence (IHE) and Aru Sri Art Theatre together with the support of the Royal Norwegian Embassy and Concerts Norway. To reserve your seats please email: ihe.lanka@gmail.com or drop a text message on 0777 274 859 before 28 February. The team is guided by Kalasoori Dr. Arunthathy Sri Ranganathan as the Artistic Consultant together with a group of eminent artistes Dr. Nirmala Kumari Rodrigo, Shasthrapathi Kumara Liyanawatte, Dr. P.B.R.M. Thushara, Rathi Kumarathas, S. Gobithas and Gayanath Nalaka Dahanayaka as the instructors.

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