TV Times

Passion play in Ballet form

Susitha R. Fernando

For the first time in the history of Sri Lankan drama, a passion play in ballet form will be performed in Negombo which is famously known as ‘Little Rome’ on Sunday at 6.30 pm at Kadolkele grounds in Negombo.

Titled ‘Tharakayano’, in the history of four hundred years of Sri Lankan passion plays this maiden effort will be directed with music composed by Dr. Prabath Aloka who is a medical officer presently attached to the General Hospital of Negombo. Dr. Prabath earlier produced a drama on Jacome Gonsalvez who did a yeoman service to Sri Lanka’s Christian literature.

Nearly two hundred and fifty young players will perform in ‘Tharakayano’ and the pivotal role as the choreographer of ‘Tharakayano’ is to be done by well-known dancing teacher, Namal Weveldeniya. The script of the ballet written by Wijith Rohan, a senior lecturer attached to the Department of Christian Culture of the Faculty of Humanities in the University of Kelaniya while Ranil Fernando, versatile sculpture of Christian statues is the stage director and costume designer.

“Tharakayano” begins with the story of Creation and the Fall of Adam and Eve as depicted in the book of Genesis (in the Bible) continues to show some of the major incidents in the biblical literature like that of the story of Exodus and major scenes from the life of Jesus and his journey to Calvary. The ballet uses the serpent to depict the inner craving of humanity’s greed for power, wealth and prestige in recurrent scenes.

The ballet shows many dramatic scenes in the life of Jesus up to the scene of the ‘Road to Emmaus’ which depicts the resurrection and the ascension of Jesus Christ.

‘Tharakayano’ in Negombo will write a new chapter in the history of passion plays in the country where the earliest passion plays were enacted in Duwa and Pitipana in Negombo.

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