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Sunday, 1 June 2003  
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Insincerity - her pet hate

The next time you sing 'Kandy Lamissi' give a thought to Mariazelle who catapulted into the scene with this catchy song at the age of 16. Her musical career was launched off when she won the Observer Talent Show on April 4 1970 and she was then just ten years old.

Success for Mariazelle was swift and now she is an acknowledged singer in both Sinhala and English. With four CD's of her own and participation with others as guests on 25 other CD's Mariazelle answers some personal questions.

Name: Cheryl Mariazelle Goonetilleke
Birthday: June 11 (Just nine days more and the occasion calls for celebration!)

Fav colour: Mostly pastel and vibrant shades of all colours. Actually now I wear a lot of white. I used to favour white when I was young and then later on I was advised to avoid white because I had put on weight. Now I told myself I'm reverting to wearing white.

Trendy outfits: Whatever suits me. I take into consideration my age. I'm a mother of a teenage son. I like to follow fashions, so I take a little bit from this and a little bit from that and design an outfit that goes with my image.

Fav music: Basically as you know it is country and western. But since I'm a singer I like all music, I won't put a definite demarcation. However, since recent times I enjoy Taize music - inspiration music which I was initiated into when I was in Australia in 1996. I was impressed by this chanting music which changed my outlook in life. My favourite singers apart from C&W are Celine Dion, she's of a different kind, Whitney Houston and now its Norah Jones.

Fav song of '80s and '90s: 'Moment of Truth' by Whitney Houston from the '80s. From the '90s 'Some Sweet Day' and Reba Mc Intyre's 'One Promise Too Late.'

Are you superstitious: Yes. I try not to be but I am. I believe in horoscopes to a certain extent. It is a science. I do not act according to it strictly but I respect the predictions that come out of it. I don't on the other hand believe in black cat stories.

What I feel is that God made animals with coats in different colours and we wear black too, so why 'penalise' a cat for being black!

What's your pet hate: Insincerity in colleagues and friends. In my career I follow the policy of live and let live and I don't like bad mouthing of senior musicians. What I firmly believe is that we are enjoying this position we are in because of senior musicians.

What makes you happy in life: The most simple things, like being with my twelve year old son enjoying every minute of his company. When I travel abroad performing at concerts I miss him and I often wonder should I take him too.

If you were not a singer, what other profession would you like to be in: A surgeon. I always wanted to be a surgeon when I was young. I like treating people who are sick. I find that I have healing hands.

What's your meaning of life: Life is a temporary status. How I live it, is up to me. As a singer what would you do if you ruled the world: I would ease the pain of every human being especially that of children. I had a dream of running a creche, it is one of my pet loves. Who knows I may put it into action!

If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be and why: Sometimes I think I should change my tender hearted ways and be harsh. Because being a softie has resulted in getting hurt time and again.

Which product would you like to most endorse: Any weight reducing product - before and after like!

Who's your fav cartoon character: Bugs Bunny. Through my years I've enjoyed Bugs and still continue to watch him. He makes me happy.

Ideal holiday destination: There's no place like home. No place like Sri Lanka.

Your career so far: I'm happy with my career. I've been singing for the past thirty five years and I could have gone a pace faster but in the long run a slowdown is longer lasting. I appreciate my Sinhala audiences. In our country they are in a majority while at the same time my English audience is a discerning audience and I value the criticism they offer me which has further enhanced my career.

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