Battling it out on stage

By Himal Kotelawala

We’ve all heard of Reality TV. In fact, there seems to be nothing BUT Reality TV on air these days. Some follow it with wild enthusiasm like it’s the best thing since sliced bread. Some avoid it like the plague.
But ever heard of a Reality Concert? No?

Then head down to the Bishop’s College Auditorium today at 6pm and get to know first hand how it works in the real world, the real unforgiving cut throat nature of the music industry, as you witness live on stage, for the first time in Sri Lanka, and get this, for the first time in the world, a Battle of the Bands unlike any other.

Organised by World Music Entertainment (WME), and run and financed solely by its Chairman Malinda Perera and Executive Director Nikhila Ranasinghe, Revolution – Battle of the Bands (Rock), will see three amateur rock bands outperform each other in order to win the coveted title, and more importantly, a six month contract with WME, says Malinda.

“We’re starting off with the rock concert project. That’ll go for a period of six months starting this week,” he says.

Three bands will compete for the inaugural WME Rock Championship title. But this concert will not have the typical “win and disappear” scenario, says Malinda.

“The winner will receive a six month contract with our company. They will receive the “WME Rock Champion” title. Although they win the title they have to defend the championship during the next concert. (There will be battles every month). Public appearances, merchandise, and concerts will all be funded by us for a period of six months provided there’s no breach of contract,” he says.

Also, a band maybe interrupted during a particular performance by another rival band. “Each band gets half an hour and will get to perform four songs.

The ‘interruption’ will take place during additional performances, but it is all preplanned, although in some cases, the bands might not know what to expect,” says Malinda. The winner will be chosen by...you guessed it....the audience. “There’s a voting system. In the ticket, there’ll be strips with the names of the bands (the bands being 1234, ROK-Salt, Riddle Machine and Outpost).

Towards the end of the show they can select the strip that represents the band they think should win.
The show is scheduled to end by about 9pm. Voting starts at 8,” says Malinda. According to Malinda, although the first ‘season’ will feature rock bands only, depending on the success of the programme, they will expand to other genres as well.

“Winners get a free show every month. They’ll be paid even if they don’t perform. They just have to follow our storyline” he explains. Tickets are available at the Bishop’s College Auditorium, priced at Rs. 500 and Rs. 400 (balcony). One last detail before we wrap things up. The audience also stands a chance to win some prizes, in addition Malinda has planned a very special ‘surprise’ ending to the show.

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