“Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight, At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more, When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again.” It certainly is spring for the thespians of S. Thomas’ College who are brimming with passion [...]

The Sundaytimes Sri Lanka

Things never happen the same way twice

The thespians of S. Thomas’ College will bring something different to their retelling of C. S. Lewis’ ‘The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe’

“Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight, At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more, When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again.”

It certainly is spring for the thespians of S. Thomas’ College who are brimming with passion as they take on a theatrical production of C. S. Lewis’ ‘The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe’. Taking up the arduous task of retelling a story that has been effervescent in the minds of children for decades, the Thomians will aspire to bring out something different, something more. Much like Aslan puts it — “Things never happen the same way twice, dear one.” 

Anushka Samarasinghe – Peter

Playing the parental character of Peter Pevensie, Anushka had no trouble sinking his teeth into the role, as his real-time job of being the President of the drama society sums it all up for him. Being a part of the previous production back in 2006 (as Lucy), Anushka has an insatiable aspiration to top it in all aspects. “I look at the paper cuttings from the last time we did Narnia, hung up on my wall, and I know that we can do so much more this time. Simply because of the advancement of technology and our belief of the whole cast,” he tells us. 

Pix by Dominic Sansoni

This production is somewhat emotional to Anushka, as it’s the last time he’ll don the stage as a thespian for S. Thomas’ College. “It has not been easy knowing that it’s the last performance for the college, but everyone has been supportive and we’re definitely going to give the audience a piece of Narnia to remember.”

Niran De Mel – Edmund

Niran is a seasoned actor, having performed in more than nine productions — getting into the rebellious boots of Edmund Pevensie was no hassle. “I play a role that goes through a lot of changes as the play evolves, and there is a mix of emotions that I have to bring out,” Niran tells us. “Edmund is someone who wants to grow up fast and call the shots, so he’s vulnerable to evil by default.” Being coerced into betraying his own kin, by the evil White Witch — Edmund has to deal with the repercussions and correct his mistakes.

Chathura Gunasekara, Adnan Izath – Susan

Splitting up roles on different days of the play, both Chathura and Adnan aspire to bring out the best in the adventurous Susan Pevensie, adding their own identities in to the character. Being second in command -so to say- Susan’s role is a courageous one to fill. “We don’t try to play identical roles, but we watch each other play Susan and learn from it,” says Chathura.
While it’s Chathura’s sixth school production, Adnan is getting his first taste of acting. “The hardest part is probably trying not to kill anyone with the bow and arrow,” laughs Adnan.

Akil Ismail, Tharuka Jayaratnam – Lucy

“It’s not all too bad playing a female role, but you constantly have to think of the way you sit,” Tharuka tells us of his biggest worry, playing Lucy. There’s a closer bond between Lucy and Susan, and this is felt very much on stage too, with the older characters slipping in a word of advice into Lucy’s ear. “That’s not entirely the case on my end,” laughs Akil — who has to work with the debutant Adnan playing Susan. “But everyone’s supportive and we try to bring out ourselves in the character.”

Jonathan Edward – Mr. Tumnus

Jonathan has a role to play that transcends his character. Mr. Tumnus is effectively the first creature of Narnia that audiences will catch a glimpse of and this means that Jonathan has to set the stage for the transition from the real-world into the magical one of Narnia. “Being a fawn, I have to literally be on my toes for the entire production. Mr. Tumnus is probably the most loved character from Narnia and I have to emit a loveable presence on stage.” Jonathan tells us. “The character goes through a kaleidoscope of emotions and it takes a lot of effort to make the audience take that emotional journey with you.”

Katheesh Henry – Aslan

For someone who has never acted for more than 20 minutes on stage, playing the god-like role of Aslan is mammoth in nature, but Katheesh knows that he’s got what it takes to pull this off. “I took some time to blend in with the cast, but everything got better soon and now I feel comfortable being on stage.” Aslan the Lion is the god-like embodiment that C. S. Lewis intended, and it brings out all that is good in Narnia. Being a mentor to the Pevensie children and the people of Narnia, Aslan commands the fight for freedom. “The thing with Aslan is that he knows what happens next, in keeping with the prophecy. It takes much more to hide something you know.”

Jodash Serasinghe – Jadis (the White Witch)

“Filling the shoes of the White Witch is very hard, literally,” Jodash points at a tiny pair of shoes with a grin. “What’s even harder is fighting battles in a dress,” he laughs. Jodash’s qualms are more on the attire end rather than the acting, but Jadis is miles away from being an easy role to portray. “Like Aslan symbolises the good, Jadis symbolises evil, but there are delicate ways to bring that out — she commands in a very cunning manner,” says Jodash. Coming on the back of a comical role in “Cash on Delivery” last year, playing Jadis is a challenge that Jodash has accepted with arms wide open.

Ashwin Schaffder, Lihan Mendis – Father Christmas

Father Christmas brings out hope within the play, and both Ashwin and Lihan strive to capture that sense of hope. “There is the magical element about being Father Christmas as he announces the coming of good times for Narnia,” says Ashwin. While Ashwin tells us that he’s been acting for eight years, Lihan cheekily mentions that it’s been eight months for him. “Keeping up with Ashwin’s level of energy is pretty hard during rehearsals, but there is a lot I learn from him and at the end of the day it’s about how effective you bring out the role with a dash of your own personality.” 

‘The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe’ will go on board at the Lionel Wendt, from November 7-10 from 7.30 p.m. Tickets priced at Rs. 500, Rs. 750 and Rs. 1,000 are available at S. Thomas’ College Gym, BARS Cafe and at the Lionel Wendt.

Share This Post

comments powered by Disqus

Advertising Rates

Please contact the advertising office on 011 - 2479521 for the advertising rates.