“Guwan Prathiba Praba’ a novel event in search of true talent of the SLAF was staged at the Auditorium of the British School in Colombo this evening (5th November 2011) and concluded as a resounding success.
According to a concept of the Chairperson of the Sri Lanka Air Force Seva Vanitha Unit (SVU), Mrs Neelika Abeywickrema, this mega talent search was initiated approximately 3 months ago. It was made a reality by the tireless efforts of the Seva Vanitha unit and the Officers and other ranks.
This mega talent search, conducted over the past 3 months in search of talent from all SLAF camps island-wide with the aim of highlighting their vocal, dramatic and spoken abilities, took a very special form this time, as not only the service personnel but members of their families were also encouraged to enter this mega talent search.
The talent search encompassed 5 stages during which initial selection was held at station/base level and the stages graduated through quarter finals, semi finals which was held at the Defence Services School Auditorium and the Air Force Headquarters auditorium, and culminated in the evenings final which was held at the British School in Colombo.
Those who displayed exceptional capabilities in the categories of song, dance acting and speech faced the finals this evening. 5 contestants from the song category and 3 contestants from the dance category were selected for the finals. The specialty of this event was that the female dance finalist was a family member of a service person. In the speech category 3 contestants were selected for the finals while in the group dance segment 3 acts and 3 drama events were also included in the finals.
The Guwan Prathiba Praba talent contest proceedings were flagged off by a welcome performance of the SLAF dance troop while the President of the SVU Mrs. Neelika Abeywickrama cordially welcomed all the special invitees and the evening’s proceedings commenced.
The prominent panel of judges included well know dramatist Mr. Bandula Withanage, Mr. Edward Chandrasiri, Mr. Dayarathna Ratagedara were assigned to judge the oratory contest while Mr. Nisshanka Diddeniya, Mrs. Rathna Lalani Jayakody and Mr. Sahan Ranwala were assigned to judge drama category. The well recognized singer Mrs. Indrani Peiris, Visharada Deepika Priyadarshani Peiris and Mr. Samantha Perera judged the vocal abilities whilst Mrs. Jayawanthi Paneebharatha, Mrs. Rangana Ariyadasa and Mr. Suraj Mapa were assigned to judge the dancing category.
The actors, singers and speakers who were all non professionals, were well appreciated by the supreme panel of judges for the talents they displayed on stage, though they didn’t possess any experience in the artistic field. The judges made special mention of the fact that their talents were nothing less than those of professional artists. It was also clear that the audience itself was amazed at the standard of the performances. The stage was always filled with songs well sung, well choreographed individual and team dancing acts, drama’s which held poignant reminders of life and dramas which had the audience weeping tears of mirth. This display of individual and group talents was followed by another amazing drum fusion display of the eastern (classical) band of the SLAF band which is just one month old.
The Secretary to the President Mr. Lalith Weerathunga and Mrs Weerathunga graced the occasion as the Chief Guest. The Commander of the Air Force Air Marshal Harsha Abeywickrama, the Chairperson SLAF SVU Mrs. Neelika Abeywickrama, the Chairperson of the Navy SVU Mrs Neluka Dissanayake, The Chief of Staff Air Vice Marshal Kolitha Gunatilleke and the Directors of the SLAF and their spouses were among the distinguished guests at the event. Furthermore a cross section of Officers, Airmen and their families also witnessed this extravagant event.
The award winners of this wide reaching talent hunt and show were rewarded with trophies, certificates and cash prizes. The details of the award winners and their prizes are shown below:-
1st Miss Chathurika Anuradhi Hewasinghe
2nd AW Dilini Kanchana Fernando
3rd AC Dulip jaweera
1st LAC Deshan Dayarathna
2nd LAC Gayan Thilanga
3rd AW Wasana Priyangani
Group Dance Category
1st SLAF China Bay
2nd SLAF Katunayake (Western Dance)
3rd SLAF Katunayake (Tamil Dance)
1st Sgt Chaminda Kumara
2nd AW Sureni Dharshika Herath
3rd Sgt Nalaka Soyza
1st SLAF Katunayake ( Film Shooting)
2nd SLAF Anuradhapura (Balu An Raja We)
3rd SLAF Katunayake (Bihisunu Mayawa)