TV Times

Akon Lonely boy in Colombo

By Sanath Weerasuriya

In a bid to make Sri Lanka Asia’s foremost Entertainment hub, the Sri Lanka Tourism and Promotion Bureau in collaboration with Platinum Entertainment, will be hosting the biggest concert ever to hit Colombo featuring popular Hip hop and R n’ B star Akon.

The Grammy Award winning star is expected to tour the Asian Continent stopping over at several countries before making his way to the shores of Sri Lanka on 24 April, where he will be performing to an audience at the Sinhalese Sports Club (SSC) grounds from 5.30pm onwards.

Akon is a Senegalese -American R&B singer-songwriter, record producer, businessman and philanthropist. He rose to prominence in 2004 with his debut album ‘Trouble’. He has since founded two record albums ‘Konvict Muzik’ and ‘Akon Live Distribution’.

He is currently accredited with over 200 guest appearances, 36 Billboard Hot 100 Singles, 6 Grammy Award nominations and is the first solo artiste to hold the both the number 1 and sports simultaneously on the Billboard Hot 100 charts twice.

Platinum Entertainment, celebrated for employing world renowned music personalities, has organized a series of events which is to commence in Australia from the 13 April before heading to Sri Lanka and finally flying to Singapore for the finale on April 26.

Lasantha Samarasinghe, Director of Platinum Entertainment said ‘This is a remarkable breakthrough for Sri Lanka as this will be Akon’s first concert in the Subcontinent. His previous outings in Asia include Singapore and Malaysia. This event will be the first of its kind in Sri Lanka and will be a benchmark for the future’.

The event is in line in creating the perfect platform for Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau’s ambitious Tourism Campaign ‘Visit Sri Lanka 2011’ which is tipped to attract a target of 2.5 million tourists by 2016. A concert of this magnitude is a great opportunity for Sri Lanka to exploit its potential and transform into entertainment hub in Asia.

Dileep Mudadeniya, Managing Director of Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau said ‘The event would contribute immensely towards promoting tourism in the country and would make Sri Lanka a popular venue in global entertainment. Sri Lanka Tourism is striving towards bridging the void that was caused during the 3 decade conflict that drove away youth from Sri Lanka. With the dawning of peace, it is expected to regain 40% of the lost market share of youth tourists in the coming years’

Tourists from all corners of South East Asia are expected to head to the Island, as result of the magnificent musical fiesta and Nat Geo rating Sri Lanka as the second best Island in the world. Tickets are priced starting at Rs. 2 500, Rs. 5 000, Rs. 10 000 and Rs. 25 000 and are to be released from 18 March onwards.

Gates for the concert will be open from 2.00pm.

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