5th Colombo International Theatre Festival from April 1-6


Parakrama Niriella, M. Safeer and Saumya Liyanage addressing last week’s news conference.

Story and pic by Nethmi Wickramasuriya

The 5th Colombo International Theatre Festival, organized by the Inter Act Art Organization, has been actively involved in different activities of culture and art in Sri Lanka for the past 25 years.

Germany, India, Georgia and Italy will be joining hands with Sri Lanka to make this festival rich with cultural diversity and theatrical techniques around the world. This year, Parakrama Niriella, a veteran of Sri Lankan theatre, will be felicitated at this festival for his enormous contribution to arts for decades.

Director of the event, M. Safeer, said the inauguration ceremony of the Parakrama Niriella Felicitation, in line with the Theatre Festival, will be held on March 31 at the BMICH under the patronage of President Maithripala Sirisena, German playwright, Ms. Ingeborg Von Zadow and dramatist Parakrama Niriella.

A press conference was convened last week at the German Cultural Centre auditorium chaired by Niriella, and Saumya Liyanage, representing the organizing committee to brief the media on the activities of the forthcoming festival.

The Festival is scheduled to be held from April 1-6 at the British School auditorium in Colombo from 7.00 pm onwards to encourage individuals to showcase their talents on a recognized platform and to create an opportunity for the public to gather knowledge and view world class performances.

On April 1, ‘Sekkuwa’, a stylized drama by Parakrama Niriella, depicting the Sri Lankan socio-political environment will staged as the inaugural performance as a tribute to the veteran. This will be followed by a series of performances by Sri Lankan and international directors and artistes. Simultaneously, the Colombo Theatre Workshop will be conducted by foreign and local theatre scholars from April 1-6 at the Indian Cultural Centre on areas such as choreographic drama and youth theatre.

Niriella said it is imperative that artistes and government organizations join hands when working for the benefit of cultural development in Sri Lanka.

Elaborating on the Colombo Theatre Forum, Saumya Liyanage also emphasized on the importance of empowering directors and actors of theatre and the need to focus on increasing the contribution of the cultural economy to GDP in Sri Lanka.

The Forum will pave the way for both local and international directors and artistes to meet and discuss ideologies, future trends and challenges that concern the emerging and experimental theatre industry in general. It will be held from April 2-4 at the German Cultural Centre.


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