Ten years ago when her son was born, Asha Ilapperuma, the Directress of 'Mystical Rose International Academy' wanted to do the best for her son, as all mothers. She knew a child's best and first teacher is his mother, and so she decided to take the responsibility to her hands totally. In 1998 she started her own Montessori along with an activity school, which was her dream. The Montessori had a handful of students to begin with, but the activity school had 25 kids! The place was called 'Mystical Rose Montessori and Activity School'.
When the word started spreading about the quality of teaching and the variety of subjects offered at the activity school, (Speech and Drama, Spoken English, Effective Communication, Voice Training, Singing, Dancing, Ballet etc) the numbers began to grow steadily.
It was then that Asha thought of starting a Performing Arts Studio which was not available anywhere in the country at the time. The Julia Gabriel School and the YMCA Metropolitan in Singapore stepped forward as Consultants in setting up the studio in Sri Lanka. Their expertise and guidance was invaluable to Asha in expanding the premises, setting up suitable facilities and recruiting experienced teachers and facilitators.
In 2003, 15 students were taken with 3 teachers to Singapore on a mutual visit to observe and learn from their counterparts. The participants returned to the island with knowledge, experience and enthusiasm. The exposure at such a tender age helped them build confidence and gave leadership qualities.
In the same year summer camps were organized by The Mystical Rose Academy. These camps were attended by participants from UK, India, China, and Malaysia. The activities included all aspects of drama training and theatre studies.
Mystical Rose Academy obtained the license to operate as a full fledged Drama Studio, from Singapore in the same year. This was another feather in their cap! The Studio continued to flourish in numbers and in quality. The same subjects they began with and a few more such as Public Speaking, News Reading etc were also added under the able guidance and support of many experts in the fields.
With a repertoire of being strong in numbers, having adequate facilities and opportunities, Mystical Rose has now been approved by Edexcel UK (QCA approved examining body) as the only Drama Academy to offer the BTEC Certificate and Diploma in Performing Arts in Sri Lanka. This authorization has come under stringent supervision, and having reached the required specifications. Further, there will be regular checks conducted by the local office as stipulated by the parent body in UK. The courses are due to start in January 2009 and further information can be obtained from the office on (2864495 & 4938335)
A Corporate Member of the Society of Teachers of Speech and Drama (UK), the Performing Arts Studio is on now on firm ground. They conduct regular workshops by relevant personalities with experience, and prepare students for both local and London examinations (Trinity Guildhall, London College of Music - Thames Valley University and London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art -LAMDA) for all age groups. This year, six Diploma candidates completed the Associate and Licentiate Diplomas in (Performance) Speech and Drama. The present strength of students on roll exceeds a thousand with a force of 12 teachers.
The Mystical Rrose Performing Arts Studio also does annual productions, which come as a climax to highlight the talents of the students. The productions (Musicals) of 'Ernie's Incredible Illucinations' and 'Daniel and the Lions' were directed by Timothy McCarthy, an examiner for Trinity Guildhall School of Music and Speech. As preparation for these productions the school conducts workshops under the guidance of well known director/ script writer and actor, Indu Dharmasena.
As a Committee member of the British Federation of Festivals in Sri Lanka, Mystical Rose Performing Arts Studio participates at the Annual Festivals conducted by the local chapter. It is no wonder that they have emerged All Island winners for the past four consecutive years bagging the highest number of gold medals and the highest number of All Island Winners.
The subjects offered at the Performing Arts Studio are:
Speech and Drama
Solo and Group Drama
Mime and Improvisation
Communication Skills etc.
At present the Drama workshops are conducted by Indu Dharmasena, the specialized voice training by Sanjeev Jeyaratnam, Presentation Skills by Menaka Wijesinghe, News Reading by Faizal Bongso and the BTEC Performing Arts programmes (Edexcel) and the Diploma in Speech and Drama by Viranthi Cooray.
For more details on the programmes and enrolments please contact:
No. 941/30, Kotte Road,