Sanda Langa Maranaya in Jaffna
Kaushalya Fernando's "Sanda Langa Maranaya", will be on stage on
April 23 at 4.00 p.m. at the Kailasapathy Auditorium, University of
Fernando, five-time winner of the prestigious Best Actress award at the
National Drama Festival, Colombo, is directing the Sinhala version of
Blood Wedding as Sanda Langa Maranaya.
The play is one of the famous trilogy based upon Spanish society,
written by Federico Garcia Lorca in response to a newspaper article
concerning a local murder in Spain. Garcia Lorca is probably the most
celebrated dramatist in Spain and, according to theatre critiques and
academics, one of the most poetic playwrights of the 20th century.
The story of the play is a triangle of passionate love among a
bridegroom, a married man, and a young bride. According to critiques,
the play basically is a tragedy of missed love, treating certain
universal themes such as extremism, intolerance, and inflexibility in
That makes the play very relevant even today, Blood Wedding has
conquered many types of performing art forms; stage play, ballet,
musical, film, etc. throughout the world in different languages,
reaching different cultures. For its high drama, freedom of thought and
relentless tension, Blood Wedding no matter when and where it performs,
has been dazzling and entrancing the audience, say many theatre
Sanda Langa Maranaya is Kaushalya's debut direction. Kaushalya
Fernando and Nadee Kammellaweera translated the play into Sinhala. The
young group of actors of the Play House in Kotte takes part in the play.
Play House-Kotte, founded by Somalatha Subasinghe in 1979, is the only
of its kind in Sri Lanka, which produces mainly musical plays for
children and youth, with professional actors. Sanda Langa Maranaya
performance in Jaffna University Auditorium is organised by the Courtesy
of Dharmasiri Bandaranayake's TrikonE Art Centre.
According to Kaushalya, the basic style of the production of Sanda
Langa Maranaya is semi-musical-surrealistic-type. She incorporates
choreographed movements, music and rhythm, and vivid lighting and
colours in addition to very intense acting on stage.
Kaushalya is confident that with stylised realism on the stage as a
production strategy would impart the audience an entertaining yet
intense theatre experience. She believes the fact that primarily theatre
should be appealing to the spectators.
Without mass participation, a strong theatre culture will be a
distant dream. Kaushalya, with her vast experience on stage, screen and
television, and very enthusiastic artistes of the "Play House" in Kotte
who have joined hands with her are working untiringly to bring a
memorable theatre experience to the Sri Lankan audience.
Kaushalya also tries to bringforth the youth aspect with the style of
production she exercises in the play. Energetic, very honest and intense
behaviour to issues in life symbolises youthfulness. In "Blood Wedding",
it is a section of youth who behave in that manner turn out to be the
victims of fanaticism in the society they live in.
Kaushalya experiments with these elements of youthfulness in the play
to build the dramatic intensity. Working with a very youthful group of
actors and other creative workforce in Sanda Langa Maranaya production,
Kaushalya exerts herself to make it a very familiar experience to the
Sri Lankan audience.
Somalatha Subasinghe, the veteran playwright and actress, after a
brief spell of absence, gives soul to one of the leading female roles in
Sanda Langa Maranaya. Chamila Peiris, Wishvajith Gunasekera, and
Prasanna Mahagamage, the new generation performing artistes, who are
groomed at the Play House in Kotte, give flesh and blood to the three
main youthful characters that is wrapped up in the triangle of love.
Other characters are played by Lucian Bulathsinghala, Nadee
Kammallaweera, Suresh Fernando, Nayomi Gunasiri, Lakmini Seneviratne,
Sharmaine Gunaratne, Mayura Kanchana, Sanjaya Hettiarachchi, Champika
Kannangara, Ishara Wickramasinghe, Thilokanee Gunasekera, and a number
of newcomers to the national theatre groomed at Play House, Kotte.
Nadeeka Guruge, an upcoming young musician of a different breed,
composes music for the play. Because the play is based on rural Spain,
Sri Lankan folk music provides the basis for the score while the guitar
has extensively been used to beautify the score with Spanish flavour,
augmenting the intensity of acting.
Choreographed movements created by Chandana Aluthge take the play to
the very edge of stylised realism, the production strategy used by the
director. Choreographed movements, music, and intense acting are
wonderfully concerted to enhance the dramatic sensuality on the stage,
making way for a momentous theatrical experience to the audience.
Namal Jayasinghe creates stage sets and properties while make-up is
by Sumedha Hewawitharana. Lighting designed by Chandana Aluthge and
stage management is by Aruna Jayasena.
Film director Pollack hides ideas behind glitz
By Jeffrey Goldfarb, LONDON, (Reuters) Sydney Pollack's movies like
"Three Days of the Condor" glorify tormented individuals fighting an
oppressive system - a reflection of the 70-year-old director's own
conflicted relationship with Hollywood.
Making movies defines his very existence and has served as an outlet
for the gloomier aspects of his personality, Pollack told Reuters in an
interview. But he has been forced to explore such thoughtful conflicts
covertly to satisfy an American filmmaking culture focused more on glitz
"I'm in the habit of trying to protect the commercial aspects of a
movie because of the system I work in," Pollack said while in London to
promote his political thriller "The Interpreter" starring Nicole Kidman
and Sean Penn. "For better or for worse, I got stuck in the swimming
pool of mainstream Hollywood where you make expensive movies that are
supposed to reach as many people as possible with big movie stars who
make a lot of money and marketing costs that are enormous," he said.
"You scare people if you talk about serious ideas so I don't talk much
about the ideas of a movie."
That doesn't mean they aren't there.
"The Interpreter" questions whether diplomacy is a viable alternative
to violence, just as Pollack's 1975 thriller "Three Days of the Condor"
took a paranoid swipe at the government and his 1982 comedy hit
"Tootsie" subversively probed how men and women relate to each other.
The complex philosophies underlying Pollack's blockbusters are in
part the result of his having had to cope with his mother dying when he
was 16 and the death of his only son in a plane crash in 1993.
"Tragedy, grief, whatever, is a big, big, big part of life to me,"
Pollack said. "I know that I'm drawn to it."
So much so, in fact, that he said he often forces himself to pull
back from becoming too dark. He seeks refuge by producing independent
films like "Searching for Bobby Fischer" and "Sense and Sensibility"
with his company, Mirage, and by directing such lighter fare as
"Tootsie" and "Sabrina".
"My two daughters beat me up all the time about it - 'Don't get
melancholy in this movie, Dad, don't get maudlin.' I have a tendency to
do that and so I try to fight against it," Pollack said.
Still, Pollack, whose 1985 drama "Out of Africa" won seven Oscars
including Best Picture and Best Director, ruminates over difficult
themes, fascinated by the fact that over the millennia men and women
still haven't managed to figure each other out and that people can't
stop killing each other. "It knocks my brains out that it's 2005 and
we're doing the exact same things we did before," he said. "We are no
better off than we were at the Inquisition. It's crazy."
Born in Lafayette, Indiana, Pollack began his career in 1959 as a
dialogue coach for John Frankenheimer's television production of "The
Turn of the Screw" and soon started directing episodes of "The
Defenders," "Ben Casey" and "The Fugitive".
He made his first film, "The Slender Thread," in 1965, about a
college student volunteering at a crisis centre who receives a call from
a suicidal woman.
African art, black, white and sombre
The World of Arts by Gwen Herat from Johannesburg
Twilight - oil pastel on paper - 1994 David Koloane
We tend to associate African art with the wild, untamed, the tribal
etc. Though African artistes are passionate about their culture,
inheritance and identity, they also broke away to an extent, the
traditions of using black and white as their forceful medium and fall in
line with the changing face of contemporary art.
The sorrow and suffering this nation had experienced, endured are
inadvertently captured on canvas. What I saw at many art centres were
different. From Johannesburg to Pretoria, they varied in mood and theme
but morbity, anger, ferocity, aggression were stamped in every line and
stroke. Did they fail to 'see' the colours on the rainbow, the blue in
the heavens, aquamarine in the sea or the lush green in their abundant
Twilight - oil pastel on paper - 1994 David Koloane
But African art is marvellous. Softly and silently, it tells the
world of their anguish. A tale of sadness and mental unrest inflicted
upon their forefathers by the whites and their slow process of rising
out of it. Even though modern artistes attempt to bring in a fusion of
colour, the brush strokes still reveal the hurt. Their masters are
hardly known or praised outside the art centres that exhibit their work.
On discreet inquiry, I found that funding was the main cause which even
led to the closure of the prestigious Johannesburg Art Foundation
Discovering African art is an experience that I felt on every face;
the agony of life was present. It is because at some stage in their
lives, these artists may have encountered dismal situations. They
appeared to be living with it.
Of the many painters, David Koloane stood out as the one who keeps
black and white bound together but he is a great artist of colour too.
He constantly evolves achievement and his transformation of a dedicated
awareness and strong participation in what has gone and what is going in
his world, is the keynote.
Unlike many painters who had made success and carved out very
individualistic careers, Koloane remains on intense sense of community.
Born in Alexandra in 1938, David Koloane's sense of community came from
his youth that was spent in the township during the Struggle. He was
politicised at a young age when Albert Luthili, the legendary President
of the ANC came to speak at Number 3 Square in Alexandra in the early
All the streets were decorated and hopes high despite the hardship of
the people. Koloane was in primary school but he understood the
importance of solidarity.
He studied under Bill Ainslie at the Johannesburg Art Foundation from
1974-1977 and this was one of the few art centres open for training
black students during the apartheid years. Later, he trained at the
Museum Studies at the University of London.
After his studies he returned to South Africa where he co-founded the
Thupelo Art Workshop project. David Koloane has exhibited his work all
over the world and his works are hung in museums and galleries that
include the Smithsonian Institute in the USA, DaimlerChrysler in Germany
and the Victoria Albert Museum in the United Kingdom.
He is a member of the Arts Council of Africa. Internationally he is
considered a pioneer black artist in apartheid South Africa and a
founder member of many institutions promoting and supporting art and
talent from the mid 70s.
He has also been the curator of a number of international groups.
Being the co-founder and Director of the Fordsburg Artists' Studio, he
was appointed by many institutions to foster art in Africa.
In 1998, David Koloane received the prestigious Prince Claus Fund
Award in the Netherlands.
Koloane's work reflects the socio-political landscape of South Africa
both past and present. The colours created by the apartheid system have
to a large extent transfixed the human condition as the axis around
which his work revolves. In that context, all artists emulate him.
Brisbane International School celebrates World Health Day
World Health Day was celebrated at Brisbane International School on
the 7th April, 2005.
mark this day a medical camp voluntarily organised by a group of doctors
was held in the school premises, under the World health Day theme
"Mother and Child".
The Health Camp was based on oral care of children and physical
health screening. The students were educated on oral health and
nutritional values of food by posters, leaflets and an educational video
The enthusiastic students also illustrated their views on the
importance of a healthy life by paintings and posters depicting a
healthy society. Dental care was organised by Dental Surgeon Dr. Mrs.
Kahandawa and general health screening was organised by Dr. Mrs. Sumudu,
Dr. Jayalal and Dr. Mrs. Bodhinayake.
The program concluded successfully and the tired doctors were
refreshed by an entertaining recital performed by the youngsters of the