From opera to local compositions: There’s something for everyone

By Megara Tegal

Three of Sri Lanka’s finest female musicians are currently working together to present a one of a kind evening of song. Soprano Menaka de Fonseka Sahabandu collaborating with pianist Soundarie David Rodrigo, both of whom are internationally renowned musicians, have organised the concert with Zonta Club 1 in aid of the Samata Sarana charity.

The third female musician, guest performer and flautist, will be Sureka Amerasinghe who hopes to perform some new material she’s picked up from her recent visit to the USA.

Cutting across several genres of song, Menaka says the recital for voice and piano will feature songs ranging from classical, Broadway, arias from popular operas and local compositions. “The programme is very varied,” elaborates Menaka. “We have selected songs from a broad cross section so that it will appeal to an audience of diverse musical interest. For the first half we will perform opera arias and art songs, while the second half will be lighter as we will be performing songs such as ‘Fly Me to the Moon’ and Sri Lankan music accompanied by tabla and flute.”

Giving us a sneak preview into what to expect, Menaka says in the opera segment they plan to perform arias from the Marriage of Figaro, Una Voce Poco from the Barber of Seville by Rossini and the Jewel Song from Faust by Charles Gounod.

Menaka has performed in international operas, including ‘Carmen’ by Bizet for which she was invited by the Neemrana Foundation to play the role of Frasquita. Soundaraie David Rodrigo is a familiar name in Sri Lanka, and has brought the country much recognition with the musical prowess of her ‘Soul Sounds’ choir. Sureka Amerasinghe is a talented pianist, violinist and flautist.The concert ‘An Evening with Menaka and Soundarie’ will be held at the Lionel Wendt on Tuesday, October 19, at 7.30 p.m. Tickets are available at the Lionel Wendt and are priced at Rs. 1500, 1000, 750, 500 and 300.

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