I will not lie, I am a huge fan of this fantastic artiste, so walking in to the Wendt on Saturday September 13, I wasn't expecting anything less than a fantastic evening of music and, to be honest, I was not disappointed!
The programme was filled with a variety of music ranging from the genres of classical, spiritual and pop, along with a few Sinhala numbers. The evening started off with the classical numbers, "Nessun Dorma" and "Oh Promise me" and smoothly moved into two spiritual songs – "Amazing Grace" and "The Lord's Prayer." The infamous "Santa Lucia" along with other Italian/ Neapolitan songs, "Torna Suriento" and "Vieni sul ma," set the tone for the evening and gave those listening to Rohan, a clear idea of the amazing range possessed by this talented baritone.
Guest performances by The Revelations, which included barbershop favourites such as "Mary Lou," "It had to be you," and "Dream a little dream," as well as The Beatles' number "Penny Lane", were all sung to perfection.
Ishan joined his older brother Rohan on stage to cover two well-known Sinhala numbers, the memorable "Ganga Addara" and the song that never fails to take us back to our childhood, "Ma Baala Kale", both of which were very well received and appreciated.
Ishan also covered "The wonder of you" and "Spanish eyes" which were a real treat.
The accompanists, Soundarie David Rodrigo on piano, Neranjan De Silva on keyboards and Christo Prins on drums added to and maintained the essence of the evening, bringing the performances to life and enabling them to be felt through and through by the audience.
The second part of the concert, which was the livelier one with many upbeat numbers, really got the audience going as they clapped and sang along with some much loved numbers performed by the de Lanerolle brothers that included "If you love me," "Where ever you go," "I need you" and "On the banks of the Ohio".
The medley from South Pacific – "Younger than springtime" and "This nearly was mine" along with the light classical songs, "Silver threads among the gold," "Maggie" and "Put on the skillet" were also great to listen to, and added even more variety to the evening's programme.
Rohan reminisced on the times he sat on his father's lap singing, "You are my sunshine", which was a part of the evening's lively Trini Lopez medley. Tony Christie's "Amarillo" was the final song for the evening, after which the audience felt they needed still more.
The unforgettable encore "Release Me" finally concluded a packed and tasteful evening of a variety of music and songs. However, it might have been even more enjoyable if the two parts had a better mix of slow and up-tempo songs.
I know a performance has been a good one when I walk away humming a few tunes from the show…which is exactly what I did!
So well done Rohan for another successful and entertaining evening!
The print media sponsor for the concert was The Sunday Times.