TV Times

3rd February 2002

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French -Arabic 'Quartier Tixeraine' from Takfarinas

By Sanath Weerasuriya
Takfarinas, a popular French-Algiers singer is the star of this week's 'Original Music Competition', which is promoted by TV Times and M-Entertainment.

This is the story of a dreamer infatuated with love and life. The story of an audacious singer who has rocked the boat, refined the art of hospitality and celebration and understood that the only sure way to avoid losing your sparkle is to take every culture to heart. The tale begins in Tixeraine, the Kabyle quarter of Algiers perched on the heights where Takfarinas first saw the sun shine. When you are born into a family of musicians, there is no point in struggling against the inevitable. 

Neighbours made the boy a guitar when he was six, but at this age, he was as yet unaware that music had chosen him. Although he already felt its irresistible call, for the moment, he could not imagine his future and did not dare to dream at all. From the age of 8, he began to learn about adult life and embarked on a series of trades: mechanic, welder, manual worker, printer... When he looks back on these years, he says that he most enjoyed printing at the time: "I liked to work on the colours. That had a certain artistic feel for me". 

Now the artist's soul dormant within him began to appear more plainly. The path he was to follow grew steadily clearer and sprang into focus on the day his father gave him his first real guitar. He was 16 and had just won a radio contest for young talent. 

In 1976, he recorded his first tape in Algiers. Three years later, he decided that he needed a presentable visiting card and headed off to Paris to re-record everything in a studio.

The album was called "Yebba Rremene" and was the first milestone in Takfarinas' career, which was now gaining momentum. Soon after, he formed the group Agraw with Boudjemaa Semaouni. It was with this band that he took to the stage of the Paris Olympia for the first time when they played support at an Idir concert in 1980. He was to return there in his own right in 1987. "It was there," he explained later, "that I got my European musical passport." The theatre was packed with euphoric, hungrily enthusiastic young people, boys and girls, some of them accompanied by their parents. They acclaimed him as an idol.

"Quartier Tixeraine", his new album , condensed version of a flourishing career crowned with success, is much more than a compilation of tracks selected from six of Takfarinas' most impressive albums (he has eleven to his credit). It is essentially a review, a way of reminding us that behind "Zaama Zaama", the hit from the album "Yal" released in 1999, Takfarinas, builder of atmosphere and merchant of delights, has succeeded in lining up a whole string of powerful songs - from "Yebba Rremmene" to "Zaama Zaama" and taking in "Arrach" ("Tanoumi" in chaabi, the unifying music of Algiers, loved by both Arabs and Kabyles) - with Iyrics that speak of love, hope, and torment. 

This collection of songs - all re-recorded and some dramatically changed - sums up twenty years of adventure and commitment to life. But don't worry, other dreams are on their way...

So don't hesitate to get a taste of this sizzling new album, which is available at all Maharaja Entertainment proffered dealer outlets!!

To enter this contest, all you have to do is to answer the question on the coupon No 65 and send it to the address given below.

The address is "Listen to Original Music Contest, No. 64, 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 February12, 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 contest no. 61. 

Winners of two Sony original CDs are Langston Jansz of Welisara, Ragama and M. Rizmy of Bandarawela

The two audio cassette winners are Mithila N. Lambert of Kurunegala and Sarah Azd of Colombo. 3.

The 10% off gift vouchers go to Fathimath Shaira Thaha of Kandy, Dallas Avon De Silva of Pita Kotte, Chamila Jayawardena of Dehiwela , Roshini de Silva of Ratmalana and Danthika Menike of Maharagama.

Posters winners are Shirley Hector Silva of Galle, Shamil Perera of Yakkala, Chinthaka Kithsiri Bandara of Haputale, Dhammika Dharmasiri of Wattegama and M. S. Hannan of Gampola

'Sail With The Gypsies'

A musical show "Sail With The Gypsies" will be held on Friday February 8 at the Sugathadasa Indoor Stadium with the Gypsies taking centre stage at 7.00 p.m.

Also performing will be Ronnie Leitch, Corrine Almeida, Lulu, Saman Silva and Ranil Mallawarachchi. A dance item will be performed by Upuli, Chamali with the Twins Cultural Troupe.

The musical show has been organised by Sri Lanka Naval Association, which is raising funds to meet the medical and welfare needs of ex-naval personnel.

Tickets priced at Rs. 500/-, 200/- and 100/- are available at Millennium Park, Senkada,Union Chemist, the Lake House Bookshop, Sarasavi Bookshop, Hotel Biyagama Village, Elphinstone Cafe, House of Fashion, Odel Unlimited and the Sri Lanka Ex Servicemen's Association - Bristol St., Fort.

BBC back with SLBC

The Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation( SLBC) re-commenced broadcast of the BBC World Service and Thamilosai programmes from January 15. 'Sandeshaya' is broadcast from 09.15 p.m. (local time) to 09.45 p.m. and 'Thamilosai' from 09.45 p.m. to 10.15 p.m. over the FM frequencies 98.3, 99.6, 107.6 and 102.

The decision to re-commence broadcast follows discussions between BBC Sandeshaya editor Priyath Liyanage, Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe and Media Minister Imthiaz Bakeer Markar.

Arena's saucy Valentine show

Arena, the lifestyle store together with Fuji film, TNL 101.7 and Lite 89.2 FM has planned a "saucy" photography promotion for this Valentines.

Beginning Friday, February 1 and going on right until February 13, all couples who shop at Arena will be entitled to have their photographs taken .

The more naughty and saucier you are, with as many props provided by the store like flowers, heart shaped boxes of chocolates, jewellery champagnes and of course clothing.

You may be declared a winner. And, up for grabs are Vouchers from Arena, an overnight stay at a hotel in Kandy, dinners for two, Perfumes, and of course Haagen Dazs ice cream and lots, lots more.

Lord of the Ring hits new heights

In a time before history, in a place called Middle-earth, a dark and powerful lord has brought together the forces of evil to destroy its cultures and enslave all life caught in his path. 

Sauron's time has come and he needs only one small object _ a Ring that has been lost for centuries _ to snuff out the light of civilization and cover the world in darkness.

Though he has put all of his power into the search for it, fate has put it in the hands of one - a young hobbit named Frodo Baggins (Elijah Wood), who inherits the Ring and steps into legend. With the help of a loyal fellowship comprised of hobbits Sam (Sean Astin), Merry (Dominic Monaghan) and Pippin (Billy Boyd)along with Gimli the dwarf (John Rhys-Davies), humans Aragorn (Viggo Mortensen), Boromir (Sean Bean), with the guidance of the wizard Gandalf (Ian McKellen), elves Arwen (Liv Tyler), Galadriel (Cate Blanchett) and Elrond (Hugo Weaving).

Frodo must journey to the Mount of Doom to destroy the Ring. If he doesn't find a way, no one will.

The film 'The Lords of the Rings - The Fellowship of the Ring" is directed by Peter Jackson and produced by Barrie M. Osborne and Jackson, Fran Walsh and Tim Sanders. 

The movie won the AFI (American Film Institute) "Movie of the Year" at the Awards For Motion Pictures 2001. The movie is now released in US.

J.R.R. Tolkien's literary masterpiece 'The Lord of the Rings' has influenced generations of readers worldwide and continues to captivate new fans around the world. Now, New Line Cinema brings to cinematic life the epic adventure of good against evil, The Lord of the Rings: the Fellowship of the Ring, a heroic quest set in a time of uncertainty in the land of Middle-earth.

The future of civilization rests in the fate of the One Ring, which has been lost for centuries. Powerful forces are unrelenting in their search for it. But fate has placed it in the hands of a young Hobbit named Frodo Baggins, who inherits the Ring and steps into legend.

Director Peter Jackson, the trilogy represents an unprecedented undertaking _ three films made silmultaneously over a year and a half of production. 

'Irasma' after school vacation

By Susitha R. Fernando
'Irasma', a film solely targetting children is to be released next May, immediately after the school vacation on the Film Corporation circuit.

The film an adaptation of Anoma Rathnayake's award winning children's novel of the same name has been scripted and directed by Ariyaratne Vithanage.

The film unravels the story of the girl 'Irasma', who comes up in life despite her broken family background.

"Irasma" meaning, strong as the sun and soft as a flower is a girl who lost her parent's love but struggles to regain it. The role is played by Ama Wijesekera.

She is the only daughter of engineer 'Tharintha", and dance teacher 'Paani'. While the parents were busy with their jobs Irasma lives in her own world in isolation. The hidden quarrels between the parents one day turns into a major fight and Irasma's mother meets with an accident while trying to leave the house. The result being the mother taken abroad for further medical treatment and the father seeking foreign employment, Irasma is left abandoned without parental love.

Though living with her grandmother the arguments that took place in the past between father and mother continue to disturb her.

Listening to grandmother Irasma comes to identify herself with the characters in the stories decides to work hard to better her position in life.

Even after the return of her father, Irasma refuses to meet him due to the unfortunate experiences haunting her. At the same time she takes on the task of nursing her mother who is recovering from the accident.

There is nothing that could bring the separated mother and father together, except young Irasma's achievements.

Ariyaratne Vithanage, General Secretary of the Children Film Society of Sri Lanka said the film could help the children coming from broken families.

"The film's message is that the children from whatever background they come could be motivated positively with help of performing arts" said Mr. Vithanage who has been in the forefront in the effort to develop children's film culture in this country.

Directing two children films namely "Thrupthi" and 'Athuru Mithuru", Mr. Vithanage was given a jury award his direction including three other awards at the Presidential Awards ceremony.

This man who has directed films solely for children said his latest directorial effort has been categorised as a feature film tackling aspects of non-formal education obtained in today's education system.

The director who had studied the production of children's films in Germany claimed "Introducing performing arts specially like music could play a big role in the lives of children who come from disturbed environments to come up in life".

A script writer by profession, Mr. Vithanage's first script was made into the film "Selinage Walawwa" by veteran film maker Dharmasiri Pathiraja.

Having written several scripts for teledramas and films he is presently working on a teledrama script based on the Charles Dickens' world famous novel "Oliver Twist".

The cast include Irangani Serasinghe, Duleeka Marapana, Douglas Ranasinghe, Maureen Charuni, Priyankara Ratnayake and several child artistes.

To Victor Ratnayake's music and Kumaradasa Saputhanthri's lyrics Nanda Malani has sung the theme song of the film.

"Irasma" is the first children's film funded by the Film Development Fund of the National Film Corporation and also the first production under the guide-lines of the Children's Film Society of Sri Lanka..

Main parts of the filming of "Irasma" was done at locations in and around Kandy and Mawanella.

'Lagaan': A powerful story for a possible Oscar

'Lagaan', the popular Hindi movie, dealing with the payment of tax in kind to the colonial master-British is the Indian entry in the Best Foreign Film category and is said to be a strong contender for the coveted Oscar award this year.

Indian actor Aamir Khan is the producer and is directed by Ashutosh Gowarikar, Lagaan was the unanimous choice of a 14-member committee set up by the Federation of Film Industry to select a film for the competition.

The three-and haif hour epic, has already won a prize at the 54th Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland

The last Indian film to have won an Oscar for Best Foreign Film was Mother India in 1950.

Set in the latter half of the nineteenth century "Lagaan" is a film about the adversities and injustice perpetrated by the British upon the innocent peasants who face these extraordinary circumstances with fortitude and dignity.

In a small village of Champaner in North India in 1890 is a community of poor and innocent farmers who are happy ploughing, sowing, praying for the rains and reaping the harvest. Part of this community are Bhuvan (Aamir) a young farmer and Gauri (Gracie Singh), his love.

A spate of adversities strike them with the entry of a brute-like British army captain who challenges the locals to a cricket match. A dastardly character, he is planning, on the sly, to burden the villagers with a land tax (Lagaan). One of the conditions of the game is that the loser will pay the state the land tax. 

The captain knows that the villagers are ignorant of the game and its rules and therefore will retreat against his trained players.

Although poor, the villagers are people of self-respect. Led by Bhuvan they are ready to take on the Britons despite their ignorance of the game. Now comes the army captain's younger sister Elizabeth (Rachel Shelley) to their rescue. Firstly Elizabeth helps the rustic lads purely out of sympathy for them but later she grows affection for Bhuvan.

But Bhuvan is fixated on one thing. With grit and determination he and villagers stand together against the ruthlessness of their British masters. Faith and courage comes face to face with arrogance and ruthlessness and what follows is a spectacular showdown between Indians and Britons.

The film cast Aamir Khan, Gracie Singh (of Amaanat fame) and a host of Indian and British actors including Jessica Radcliffe and Rachel Shelley. AR Rahman's music in the film is folkish and have a beautiful amalgamation of Indian and western instruments. And the costumes are by Bhanu Athaiya who had done the costumes for Richard Attenborough's "Gandhi".

BBQ's of Asia

It's a new theme night come to effect- 'BBQ's of Asia' at the Union Bar & Grill Room of Hilton JAIC on Fridays from 1900hrs . 

The concept of this new fest is the selection of marinated raw food items, which are displayed at the buffet for instant cooking. Pick out from the Korean, Japanese Teppan, Mongolian BBQ and of course the spicy Sri Lankan section.

A variety of Japanese Teppan items comprises Prawns, Lobster, Chicken, Beef or try out the Korean section with a selection of their own marination - Bulgogee (Beef), Dwejee Kalbee (Pork Spareribs), Ojino Kuee (Cuttlefish), Dahk Kuee (Chicken). The Mongolian section also consists of a variety of meat items with a selection of condiments. 

'All the diners have to do is pick the sauce and rice or noodles and the Chefs will do the rest. There is also a Sri Lankan corner with spicy marinations.' said Chef Ralf Vogt.

Once the selection is made, get it cooked by experts or else you could try it yourself on the BBQ tables in the restaurant. Once the meat is cooked and served , try out the choice of sauce like hot garlic, BBQ, Soya, Oyster, Chilli paste and more.

The man behind all these creative ideas is our Executive Chef Ralf Vogt, who will be present at all nights to give his expert opinion to the diners.

'Jwala Mukhi'

From the day this world was created it has never happened that a dead man ever took revenge of his death.

But Jwala Singh (Mithun Chakraborthy) is the only man who took revenge after his death. Because, his enemies had killed only his body, but not his soul which was a volcano of honesty, duty and destiny.

This volcano created history in Palghat destroying the enemies for ever. Palghat a place from where no policeman, ever came back alive. The soul of Jwala Singh built the foundation of honesty and destiny. To watch the live symbol of sacrifice watch the heart shattering film 'Jwala Mukhi'

'Jwala Mukhi'(Hindi Film) on Swarnavahini on Sunday at 1.00pm

'Murder Most Likely'

It's a story based on real-life events, with deceit and intrigue, mobsters and crooked cops, and the glamour of the world's most exotic places.

As a member of an undercover drug squad in 1981, Patrick Kelly is a charming, clever liar. But he's soon seduced by the money and glamour of the same drug dealers he works to destroy. He becomes the ultimate con artist, inventing amazing schemes to support his increasingly expensive lifestyle.

After the mysterious death of his wife, Kelly is watched carefully and questioned repeatedly but manages to elude the authorities. He marries again, flees the country, and continues to live an extravagant lifestyle. But eventually, Kelly's lies start to unravel.

Finally, in 1984, a key witness comes forward. Based on the testimony that she'd been involved with Kelly and that she'd seen him throw his first wife off the balcony of their high-rise condo, Kelly is finally convicted. Ten years later, the witness claims she lied on the stand but police are sure they got their man. And Kelly still maintains he is innocent of murder.

On Friday, February 8 at 8.00 p.m. on ETV

The stuff Creators are mad of

By Sanath Weerasuriya
Millennium Talent contest organised by the Millennium Park in association with TV Times was packed with loads of talent.

The best were adjudged and awarded. But still there were good musicians, who were not lucky enough to hit the pot.

In group category, with all rock, pop and Jazzy sound there was something different.

Violin, thabla, flute, thammetama mixed with other western instruments were one of the outstanding.

They called themselves "Creators".

"Creators" comprises of five youngsters. Nineteen-year-old Roshan Yehiya is the leader of the group. He plays the flute. Ramesh Silva is another talented musician, who handles thammetama, getabera and davula. Harsha Perera handles guitar, violin and Dombera. Dinesh Perera plays the flute, horenava and bera. 

The only girl in the group Maria Leeyan handles vocals and she is expert on congo and drums.

Recently they did a recording with 'Brown Boogie Nation' at "Take 1" studio and the songs will be on air soon.

"It's not just normal mix of only eastern and western music. We use the different instruments to create a special sound. The kind of sound that never leaves your system." 

'Danno Budunge', 'Suraba Valiya' and a Tamil song were the songs they mix with new sounds to create that special effect to give a feel for the music.

For them sound is crucial. "First and foremost you have to listen, that's the important aspect. Then you've got to let it flow."

The newest member of the band is14-year-old Maria Leeyan, who plays the congo, drums, cowbell and thalampata. "It is quite an impressive line up," she concedes.

The 'Creators' are not slaves to music. 

Some of their best pieces had been put together minutes before a show in the backstage bathroom! 

"The bathrooms have mirrors, so we know beforehand how we look and whatever sound we make starts to echo. 

Then we know exactly what we sound like too, that's really important! But now we can't do that because we got a girl in the group now!" Roshan said.

At the Millennium Talent Contest 2001, organized by the Millennum Park, Pepsi and TV Times ,"Creators" attracted the audience' attention.

The 'Creators' hope to launch a CD in the near future. 

'We are creating few more songs to this CD and as soon as we complete, the new songs we hope to go to the studio.' Roshan explained

When asked about their parents, Roshan said, "They are not altogether happy about our new venture, but they do say that as long as we continue our schoolwork they won't pressurize us." 

'We always inform our homes about our moves and places, Sometimes they too come and listen. 

We show our parents the souvenirs we collect or get after each performance "as proof" of what we've been upto the previous night' Roshan said.

According to Dinesh his parents mellow considerably once they see "The Creators" in bold print on the programme.

"We all want to make something out of our lives, but we also want to continue with the band," they said

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