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The 100th birth anniversary of Professor Ediriweera Sarachchandra was commemorated at UNESCO on 10th June 2014 under the auspices of the Director General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova and the Honorable Minister of Culture, T. B. Ekanayake. The recognition and commemorations of the centenary birth anniversary of the Sri Lankan playwright, poet and author, who has been hailed as a cultural icon, was an integral part of the programme of historic events and anniversaries of eminent persons of universal dimensions being commemorated this year at UNESCO.

Addressing the Inauguration Ceremony, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to France and Permanent Delegate to UNESCO, Professor Karunaratne Hangawatte delivering the welcome address stressed the worthy contribution that Professor Sarachchandra has made to the field of arts and highlighted his role as an Ambassador of Sri Lanka to France and UNESCO. The Honorable Minister of Culture, T. B. Ekanayake, Secretary of the Ministry of Education, Anura Dissanayake and Vice President of the Sarachchandra Research and Activation Foundation and spouse of the late Professor Sarachchandra, Mrs Lalitha Sarachchandra also addressed the gathering. A special documentary on the life and works of Professor Sarachchandra was also screened at UNESCO.

Research and Activation Foundation and spouse of the late Professor Sarachchandra, Mrs Lalitha Sarachchandra also addressed the gathering. A special documentary was also screened at UNESCO.

The Symposium brought together distinguished personalities including Deshamanya Professor J. B. Disanayaka, Emeritus Professor of Sinhala and former Ambassador of Sri Lanka to Thailand, Cambodia and Laos, Professor (Mrs) Ranjanie Obeysekera, Professor Emerita of Anthropology, Princeton University, Professor K. N. O. Dharmadasa, Former Dean, Faculty of Arts, University of Peradeniya and Sri Lanka Ranjana Tadashi Noguchi, a renowned Japanese national on Sinhala language.

The Director General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova was the chief guest at the Book and Photographic Exhibition which presented different aspects of the life of Ediriweera Sarachchandra. She highlighted the invaluable contribution Professor Sarachchandra had made to Sri Lanka’s rich history which could be witnessed in domains as diverse as culture, philosophy and politics. Several Ambassadors and Permanent Delegates were present at the opening of the Exhibition.

Professor Sarachchandra’s first stylized play ‘Maname’, created in 1956 was staged in the main hall of UNESCO, performed by the Sarachchandra Theatre Troupe in front of a large international audience of diplomats and members of the Sri Lankan community.

Embassy of Sri Lanka - Paris - 18th June 2014

 

 


Sri Express
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