The music had our toes tapping and our hearts wanting more
“The music in my heart I bore, Long after it was heard no more” –William Wordsworth
I can hardly believe that almost seven weeks have gone by since I attended the “Canto Vivace” presented by the Methodist College Choir at the Lionel Wendt Theatre, as the beautiful music they made seems to still ring in my ears.
This youthful choir trained and conducted by Sanjeev Jayaratnam certainly surpassed all my expectations. Having known Sanjeev from the days he was the leader of the Thomian Choir about two and a half decades ago, and his track record of being a founder member of ‘Revelations’ as well as singing in several musicals produced in Colombo, I was certain that the evening would be an enjoyable one. But the beauty of the singing, the enthusiasm, exuberance and the sheer joy of the young performers, the perfect blend of harmonies, the dramatic dynamics as well as the energetic and graceful movements, simply took my breath away.
Though every item performed by the choir was excellent, “Udarata Niliya” with its accompanying cute dancers, the African chant “Kwanena Thinabo”, which sent your blood pounding, as well as the passionate rendering of “I will survive” were outstanding. Mention must also be made of the youthful conductor who took over from Sanjeev for two numbers, a talented young lady indeed.
I’d like to mention that I had taken my two 4 ½ year old granddaughters along with me for the show. They were simply enthralled by the music, and sat spellbound, swaying to the tunes throughout the performance, showing that good music transcends barriers of age.
The Guest Performance of the OGA Choir “Metho Cantanti” comprising young and not so young old girls, conducted by Anagi Perera (nee Jayasingha) was scintillating. Particularly entertaining was their tuneful rendering of the “Mama Mia Medley” which had our toes tapping, and wanting to join in. It was over all too soon and left me wishing that they sang for a longer spell.
Having sung with the Moratuwa Choral Society, trained and conducted by the late Kalasuri Lylie Godridge for 18 years, I am well aware of the dedication, commitment and sheer hard work that is required to produce a show of this standard particularly when the choir comprises 50 choristers.
My heartiest congratulations to the Methodist College Choir and Sanjeev on their brilliant performance, and their well deserved triumphs at the Vietnam International Choir Festival where they were winners in the Youth Choirs of equal category, and were awarded a silver medal in the “Sacred Music” category.
May you go from strength to strength, and I pray that you will be successful in bringing another accolade to Sri Lanka when you take part in the International Choir Championship scheduled to be held in China in November this year
-Dr. Suriyakanthie Amarasekera
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