Daily News Online

Wednesday, 14 December 2011



Child of a dream

Ranjana Chathuranga Sooriyabandara is set to accomplish a childhood dream. As a child he took part in a contingent of dancers under the tutelage of Basil Mihiripanna to perform in the play Ramayanaya in front of an Indian crowd who gave them a warm response. Now he is a man with his own dance academy - The Bharatha Natyam Ranjana Kala Nikethanaya. Other branches are in Kurunegala, Mawanella and Colombo.

Ranjana’s students. Pictures by Lalith C Gamage


And next year he hopes to launch his production of Ramayanaya right here in Sri Lanka. This production will be a fusion of Bharatha Natyam and Ballet.

Ranjana has also other plans to hatch. And they will become a reality soon. He is leading his own team into India to take part in a Dance Festival. It will be Bharatha Natyam style. Ranjana will be representing Sri Lanka along with six other students. The festival will be held on December 28. The festival will be held in Mylarpoor Vidya Bhavathi Bhawan Auditorium with representation from other countries as well.

Ranjana who has around 75-100 students under his guidance, is a Visharadha who entered the field of dance quite haphazardly. He first started to learn singing under Sanath Nandasiri at the Sharadha Nikkethanaya. Nearby there were some dancing clasess held by Basil Mihiripanna.

Mihiripanna was conducting rehearsals for the Ramayanaya play set to take place in India having received an invitation from the Indian High Commission.

"I used to watch them through the window. Sanath sensed my eagerness for Dance and advised me to take up dancing classes with Basil Mihiripanna. Sanath spoke to Basil about me and I was chosen for a small part in Ramayanaya" said Ranjana.

Ranjana spoke of his childhood experience doing Ramayanaya saying that a zest for Ramayanaya was in his blood with the success of that play. He has been in the field of dance for 10 years in India. His institute was created three years ago.

"I want to do something for this country through Bharatha Natyam because this art of Bharatha Natyam can contribute to human development. Now I am doing my own production of Ramayanaya and there are openings for aspiring young actors and actresses," said Ranjana.



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