Dialog partners Defence Ministry to launch Ranaviru Real Star 2

By Saman Waterval

The Ranaviru Real Star Mission 2 was launched in Colombo last week.

This follows the resounding success of this program (Mission 1), which, as a record-breaker was one of the most watched reality shows in 2010 in Sri Lanka highlighting the hidden talents of armed forces personnel.

"This has proven to be an enormously popular and successful TV reality show", says Lakshman Hulugalle, Director- General of the Media Centre for National Security (MCNS).

"The reality show provided a stage for our war heroes to bring out their aesthetic talents that were hidden during the war", he said.

He also said: "The key element of this show is that people can now see the other side of the person behind the gun. This person is more than a soldier. These soldiers have more talents then we see now. So it is not just fighting that they do. We wanted to show the other side of the people in the security forces and we succeeded. This year, we will have a bigger challenge than in 2010.. Mission 1 was a big success and now we want to a better job. To achieve this objective, the Ministry of Defense and Dialog have come together to do a splendid job."

Ranuviru Mission Star was developed on a concept by Defense Secretary Gotabaya Rajapaksa and is organized by the Ministry of Defense together with event partner Dialog.

Commander Damian Fernando of the Sri Lanka Navy, the winner of Real Star Mission 1 said : "I never thought that during my time in the navy that there would be something like Real Mission Star and that I would have the chance to sing in a reality show".

"I have been in the navy for many years and spent a lot of time sailing. I was also in the warfront. When I came back to base, we gathered around and sang songs together. We are fighters, but we are also sensitive people. I agree there are enormous hidden talents in the soldier with the gun in his hands", he said.

"I am proud to be in the position I am in now, I am proud to be what I am and that I could tribute to the navy during the war. I loved to sing since I was a kid", Commander Fernando noted.

Offering a word of advice to the contenders, he said "Take a good selection of songs — songs with a good structure. When you have selected them it is a matter of practicing"

The first round of Mission 2 is scheduled to commence telecast on Rupavahini on October 21 at 9 pm. The grand finale is expected to be held in May, 2012.

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