sri express

Photographs by Tissa Madawela

The KINGSBURY BAK MAHA ULELA, which is staged annually since 1991, by the Sri Lanka Education, Cultural and Welfare Foundation, under the guidance of Ven. Galayaye Piyadassi, MBE, Chief Sangha Nayaka of the UK, took place at the Harrow Leisure Centre and Byron Recreation Ground on Saturday 15 April 2017 from 10.00AM to 11PM before a gathering of over one thousand Five Hundred people.

This Sri Lanka Sinhala and Tamil New Year Celebration again lived up to its reputation as the finest outside Sri Lanka, not only in the quality of the Cultural Performances  but also in the traditional  Games and Sports, even not visible in the same place in Sri Lanka now. It   is no wonder that the Cultural Performances are of the highest quality, Professor Mudiiyanse Dissanayake, of the University of Visual and Performing Arts in Sri Lanka visits London prior to the event, to train the students, past and present, of the Sri Saddhatissa Saturday School. He also choreographed the whole progamme. He has been ably assisted by Mr A.P. and Mrs Rasika Atthanayake, Ms Olu Suraweera ( in dancing)  and Ms Anju Dabare and Mr Geeth Senadeera ( in vocal training) . The costumes were also gorgeous in rich materials with the seamstresses doing an excellent job. Mr Jayaratne Bandara, a master craftsman, created an attractive structure for the opening ceremony of lighting the oil lamp.

The special invitees participating in the opening ceremony were : HE Amari Wijewardene, High Commissioner of Sri Lanka ; Councillor Margaret Devine , Deputy Mayor of Harrow;Councillor Parvez Ahmed, The Worshipful Mayor of Brent;Councillor Sury Khatri, Deputy Mayor of Barnet; Hon. Mei Sim Lai, OBE DL, HM the queen’s Deputy Lieutenant for Brent; Councillor Kareema Marikar, Deputy Mayor Elect of Harrow; Councillor Sachin Shah, Leader of the Harrow Council; Councillor Kana Naheerattan, former Mayor of Brent ; Mr Mano Dharmarajah,  a past Mayor of Harrowt; Mr Nizam Ismail , a past Mayor of Harrow; Dr Zima Sivardeen, President/Chairman, British Sri Lanka Association; Mr Nalin Perera, Ceylon Tourist Board Representative; Mr Vicor Cherubin, CAT

Hon. P. Harrison,MP for Anuradhapura and  Minister for Rural Economic Development and Mrs Harrison also graced the occasion and the Hon. Minister also addressed the Gathering.

In the morning, Mr Sugeeswara Gunaratne, Deputy High Commissioner of Sri Lanka hoisted the National Flag with the singing of the National Anthem by the choir of the Sri Saddhatissa School followed by Rabban Playing by a bevy of ladies.

The days celebrations ended with the rendition of popular songs by the guest artiste Ms Damitha Abeyrathna backed by the SKY HIGH Band.

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