2016 was landmark year for three artistic masterpieces in terms of films, stage plays and novels. Dr. Lester James Peries’ ground-breaking movie “Rekhawa” and Prof. Ediriweera Sarachchndra’s renowned stage play “Maname” marked their 60th year milestone in 2016 while the 60th year landmark of Martin Wickramasinghe’s celebrated novel ‘Viragaya’ also crossed its 60th year in 2016, through it virtually  crossed its 60th year in 2016, through it virtually went unnoticed.

The Sinhala and Mass Communication Department of the Sri Jayewardenepura University recently held a grand event titled ‘Aravinda Thatagaya’ at the campus premises to mark the 60th year anniversary in of the ‘Viragaya’ novel which was later made into a distinguished movie by the late ‘Thissa Abeysekara’.

The late Martin Wickramasinghe’s son Dr. Ranga Wickramasinghe was the chief Guest in the day-long event’s morning session which was dedicated to in depth discussions and analysis on the book.

Dr. Sunanda Mahendra, Dr. Darshana Rathnayake, Dr. Hiniduma Senevi, award winning film maker Jayantha Chandrasiri and Dr. Senani Harischandra who heads the Sinhala  and Mass Communication Department of the Sri Jayewardenepura University were among the scholars who spoke on ‘Viragaya’. Award winning film star Sanath Gunathilake who played the impressive role of Aravinda in the ‘Viragaya’ movie was also one of the special invitees at the event that was assorted with brief acts depicting the characters of Aravinda and Sarojini as well as Aravinda and Bathi.

Saliya Serasinghe and Prami were among those who presented a beautiful dancing act on ‘Viragaya’ and other evergreen film songs. This evening was dedicated to the Screening of the movie ‘Viragaya’ with Chief Guest Prof. Carlo Fonseka also sharing his views on ‘Viragaya’.

Text: Ramesh Uvais
Cited from Daily Mirror (2nd Monday, January, 2017)