TV Times

6th January 2002

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'Enigma' ushers a new age

'Enigma' , the new wave band, is the very first star of the year 2002. Enigma will feature on this week's 'Original Music Competetion', which is promoted by TV Times and M-Entertainment.

With their 1991 hit "Sadeness," Enigma brought the new age fascination with Gregorian chants and old-world culture to the clubs; the resulting single was both unique and irresistible. The rest of the album followed that pattern successfully, although without quite matching the stunning success of the hit single. 

On their second album, 1994's Cross of Changes, some of the old-world elements remained, but the new age angle came to the forefront in a set of slick, radio-friendly dance-pop. Enigma 3: Le Roi Est Mort, Vive le Roi followed in 1996. A side project, Trance Atlantic Airwaves, issued The Energy of Sound in 1998. The fourth Enigma record, The Screen Behind the Mirror, followed in early 2000. Look out for their new album - 'Love Sensuality Devotion' LSD (Greatest Hits) which will be released for the Sri Lankan in January by M-Entertainment. 

This 'Greatest Hits' collection features 18 gems from the 4 albums. Some of the hits featured are 'Sadeness', 'Return to Innocence', 'Mea Culpa', 'Push The Limits', 'Gravity of Love', and more. A brand new track 'Turn Around' is featured on the album.

Look for this smashing album at all M Entertainment preferred music outlets in Colombo.

To enter this contest, all you have to do is to answer the question on the coupon No 62 and send it to the address given below.

The address is "Listen to Original Music Contest, No. 62, C/o Maharaja Entertainments (Pvt.) Ltd., 330, T. B. Jayah Mawath, Colombo 10.

Tell: + 941672425-8, Fax + 941699070. E Mail:

All the entries must be originals from the TV Times and no photocopies or faxes will be entertained. All correct entries will be drawn by a panel of judges.

The entries should reach the above address by January15, the latest. The decision of the judges will be final and the names of the winners will be announced in The Sunday TV Times accordingly. Here are the winners of contestant no. 58. 

Winners of two Sony original CDs are Nalaka Kellapotha of Moratuwa and S.A. Ravinda Dissanayake of Gampaha.

The two audio cassette winners are Gamini Murasinghe of Kuliyapitiya and Shanaka R. De Livera of Colombo 4.

The 10% off gift vouchersgo to Roshni Gunaratne of Polhengoda, Ayanthi Perera of Colombo 4, Cabrine Tillekeratne of Kandana, Nihal Arseculeratne of Negombo, Mohammed Nazeer of Kaduwela and Malik Hannan of Colombo 6.

Posters winners are Tyronne Paiva of Colombo 4 , Nelum Kumari Ketakumbura of Gampola, Pubudu Herath of Pannipitiya, Christina Samarasinghe of Dehiwela and Tania Silva of Moratuwa.

A second CD from Jayasri

Jayasri, popular Sri Lankan band based in Vienna is now busy putting final touches to their second CD to be released in mid year.

According to Rohan, Rohitha and Aruna, last few months were hectic for them.

"During the summer and up to now, we've been doing lots of concerts in Europe... mostly in Germany, Italy and Austria, Middle East, England and Canada.

We go as JAYASRI & Band, with 5-6 Musicians and giving our own Jayasri stuff, good collection of Sri Lankan favourites and reggae, Ethno mix. The collection of our music, stage performance and acts make us different from the others who perform here in Europe", Rohitha said in a letter to TV Times last week.

Their second CD is not named and he said it will contain songs with more ethno sounds mixing with their own style. The lyrics of the songs are more to the problems of people, the country and about love and fun.

Jayasri has done a short music score for a TV film called 'Mangalam', which is to be aired in Sri Lanka with title song 'Mangalam'. The song 'Mangalam' is a duet with Nirosha Virajini.

"Our project 'Baditos Bonitos' is also doing well. Our latest single 'Juliet' and 'Gimme Sunshine' has taken to a major computer game gear which will distribute 3-4 million worldwide in year 2002, it's nice to be among other world stars. Our singles were presented at the POPCOM Germany, one of the biggest music fairs in Europe and have gained interest from some major record labels. The single to be released soon and the Album 'Most Wanted' will follow up in 2002. With this international releases we also try our best to promote our texts in Sinhala, and music of our own", he explained.

'After our last year's visit to Colombo, we got a huge feed back from our fans via post and e-mails from different age groups. Earlier we were planning to visit in December but work load like recording, performing and promoting, kept us away from coming home", Rohitha said. Jayasri will be in Colombo for the April season with a big concert on cards.

'Still on Fire'

By Tania Fernando
'Raging then - still on fire' the concert which presented local stars of the 70's and 80's, some, who are still very much a part of the local music scene, was held last Saturday at the main auditorium at thw BMICH.

Eranga and Priyanga with the dancersEranga and Priyanga with the dancers

The concert started off with Sohan of Sohan and the X'periments doing a rendition of Tom Jones Delilah and next went on to his pupular song 'Aadare'. Although Sohan's performance of Delilah was good, his performance of 'Aadare' was not upto mark. 

Channa Wijewardene's dance troupe, who danced for Sohan's Aadare could have practiced a little more. The timing of the girls were not in order.

Next came Manilal, who started off with Shaggy's "In the Summertime"and followed by "Great Pretender" and "Sex Bomb", of which he did a good job. Specially "Great Pretender" was great .But singing tunes of the likes of Shaggy is definitely not Manilal's cup of tea. I was not too sure whether he was playing a Shaggy tape in the background for the rapping part or whether a band member was actually singing. 

Although the show was specially to feature those who were singing in the 80's there was a little bit of new talent as well. Ashanthi de Alwis, daughter of Antionnette de Alwis sang an original called "Out of the Blue" and her performance was something to write home about. She tried to get the silent audience going, but unfortunately there was very little response.

The popular Dharmaratne Brothers of 70's came next and "Wassa Wahinawa" was the song they started off with. They continued with "Kadukarai" and their ever famous "Varsity Kollo". It all went well with the audience.

After the interval of 15 minutes the ever popular husband and wife duo, who are now based in New York, Eranga and Priyanga came next. "Rala Bindu" was what they started off with and next Harry Belafonte's medley of songs. They definitely did a wonderful job of trying to get the audience to participate, while they were singing and they knew how to cater to the crowd in-house. They next sang the song that probably made them famous "Ellila Marunane Podi None". 

They are as good as they used to be or maybe even better. I wish the organizers had given them a chance of performing a few more songs, as it is very unlikely that we would see them performing in Colombo for a long time again. 

Shyami Fonseka of the Fontrop Family sang 'The Greatest Love of All" with her sister Yasmin. 

Geoffrey Fernando of Purple Rain fame who has now formed his own band 'Blind Faith' was next to perform. He started off with Frank Sinatra's 'New York, New York', which was taken well. Then he moved on to Lionel Ritchie's latest "Tender Heart", and I think many Tender Hearts were broken that night after his performance of that song. He also sang "Boogie Shoes".

After Geoffrey came Rajiv Sebastian singing Clarence Wijewardene's songs. He sang "Manju" first and then came "Kanda Surinduni". Rajiv did a very good job of that and I am sure a few people would have forgotten for a few minutes as to who was on stage. The drummers who provided the back-up did an excellent job too.

The climax of the show was the performance by Desmond de Silva and he was ranging then and is definitely still on fire.

While Desmond was performing the crowd was getting into the grove of the concert. He started off his segment at a slow pace with "I can see clearly now", "I can't stop loving you", and "La Bamba"., and then changed the pace to some of his Sinhala songs that made him a household name here. "Yanna Rata Wate", "Yaman Bando Wesak Balanna", "Mamma No" and last "Chuda Manike, some of the songs that made his famous was what he performed that Saturday.

Desmond definitely has not lost his touch although he is not part of local music scene. His dancing and his moves on stage have not changed with time, even after two decades . 

The show was organized by 'Torana Music' in commemoration of 25 years in the music industry and all the artistes were back by the X'Periments, and the show came to an end around 10 pm.

Though the show started little late, I am sure the audience didn't mind mainly because the goods delivered were a touch of class. The BMICH main auditorium at which the concert was held was not packed to capacity, but the fans of Des, Eranga & Priyanga, Dharmaratne Brothers, Geoff, Manilal, Rajive, and Fonseka Sisters enjoyed every bit of moment with their stars. Sohan and the X'Periments too performed well.

'Mayaratne' tackles an unusual theme

By Susitha R. Fernando
"Mayaratne" deals with an exceptional theme-that of a relationship between an evil spirit and a girl.

This teledrama screened every Saturday at 9 pm on Rupavahini channel is directed by Sumith Kumara.

'Mayaratne' unfolds as Upawansa, an expert in Ayurvedic medicine comes across a container full of gems while trying to find a medical plant in the forest. It was not that easy task to take this treasure home as the guardian evil spirit also named 'Mayaratne' demands that he be allowed to accompany Upawansa home. After much argument Upawansa agrees to take this ghost home in human form. 

Upawansa has a daughter who is running a communication bureau and a school going son. Upawansa begins to trade in gems belonging to Mayaratne who himself was a gem merchant in his previous birth. 

Mayaratne too loved his new form as a human and does his best to lead a life exactly like any human being. 

Upawansa made it a point not to reveal how he got the money as Mayaratne, the evil spirit extracted a promise from Upawansa every time he sold a gem to keep the source a secret. 

The villagers were surprised the way the wealth came to be accumulated but suspected that Mayaratne, the newcomer into Upawansa's family was the man behind this fortune. And Mayaratne becomes popular in the village. Everyone tries to get friendly with him expecting some assistance from him. Having gained the respect at all in the village he was appointed as the chief 'Dayaka' in the temple. He was invited to contest the election too. 

Meanwhile two young girls not being aware that Mayaratne is a spirit, in love with him. And Sarojini, the only daughter of Upawansa too plans to get married to Mayaratne. Except Upawansa, all the other members of the family agree to it. 

However Upawansa's son, Sapumal who has been helped by Mayaratne suspects that there is something unusual in this man. Sapumal suddenly disappears. Upawansa faces a problem once Mayaratne decides to marry Sarojini. 

The father takes the rest of the gems to be thrown away when Mayaratne promises to return. walks forwards the jungle saying that he would come back.

Sriyantha Mendis, Wijeratne Warakagoda, Hemasiri Liyanage, Thamara Dilrukshi and Sandeepa Sewmini play the lead roles. 

New film, new theme

Udayakantha Warnasuriya has embarked on a different path in filming his seventh effort "Bahu Buthayo" which presently is in its pre-production stage.

Filming of this work is scheduled to be finished within the next 25 days and shooting is being done in locations in and around Colombo.

The film based on a Sinhala folk-tale revolves around an evil spirited girl who had taken a human form. Having returned to live in a hi-tech world she gets friendly with two mediamen.

The cast is Mahendra Perera, Rodney Warnakula, Paboda Sandeepani, Wijaya Nandasiri and Srinath Maddumage.

The technical crew comprises Ananda Perera with music direction to the lyrics set by Kelum Srimal and sung by Visharadha Nanda Malani, Sunil Perera and Baby Shanika. Story, screenplay and direction is by Udayakantha Warnasuriya.

Benette's debut film impresses

By Susitha R. Fernando
Benette Ratnayake's debut film "The Compensation" (Aswesuma) the which won rave reviews at a number of International Film Festivals is the latest to be released in the prestigious circuit.

The film won Platinum Award for the Best First Feature at the 34th Houston I.F.F. and Special Jury Award (Fipresci) by Federation of International Film Critics at the 4th Mumbai I.F.F. and was a entry at other world renowned film festivals including Moscow IFF, Montreal IFF and Kerala IFF. 

Revolving around a man who regrets certain events in his past life the film displays a man's struggle between a world of greed and of power. 

Beginning with the funeral of the elderly Guneris' wife, the beloved husband walks straight to the police station demanding that he be imprisoned for a triple murder he had committed 52 years ago. The rest follows with the revelation of Guneris' past which is filled with a number of tragic events. 

The film reflects on a man's struggle to relieve the bottled up feelings which had disturbed him throughout his life. 

Once again internationally acclaimed actor Joe Abeywickrema is gives a remarkable performance playing the role of old Guneris who craves for peace and tranquillity. Joe Abeywickrema fits the role well which is a tribute to Benette Rathnayake too.

Playing young Guneris who runs after a gem which brings all the misfortune on him and his kith and kin is Jackson Anthony again an award winning actor gives a sterling performance. Young Sangeetha Weeraratne who plays the role of Guneris' wife acquits herself credibility. 

Aswesuma relates the story of a people supposed to have gained their freedom yet suffering under the yoke of poverty and want. On the eve of Independence in the year 1948 while the local self-styled doctor was busy celebrating the occasion with the rich colonial rulers Guneris and his wife were at his door step begging for a medicine for his malaria stricken child.

It also portrays the struggle of the poor to rise above the class that keeps them oppressed and suppressed. 

Out of the pit dug to bury the dead child arises a fabulous gem which influences the Guneris' life. The well-to-do merchants exploit the couple through harassment specially of the wife. 

However Benette Rathnayake displaying the maturity of a film director who had been in the field for a long time conveys a powerful message that it is not money or wealth that brings happiness but the peace of mind which Guneris tries to gain by begging that he be imprisoned at the police station. 

The impact Benette Ratnayake has made in his chosen field with Aswesuma is an indication that greater things could be expected of this young film maker. 

Doing location work in 'Sinharaja Forest Reservoir' and Kithulgala, Beli Lena, Ruwanwella, Karaliyadda, Mawanella etc. shows the eye for beauty of Ratnayake. 

Among the others in the cast are Ravindra Randeniya, Mahendra Perera, Douglas Ranasinghe, Hemasiri Liyanage, Indrajith Navinna, Saumaya Liyanage and Gamini Hettiarachchi. 

'Aswesuma' is now being screened at Regal Colombo, Kandy, Negombo and other theatres with English subtitles.

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