Dinesh on a successful mission:
Reviving the tunes of the past
Not many in this ever changing world of melodies and styles would
take up the task of reviving the tunes of the bygone era, but energetic
young musician, leader of the popular youth band Dee R Cee (originally `Dinesh
and Friends')is one who does not fear to take up a challenge. The
talented musician is on the mission of instilling the ancient musical
strands evolving out of history into the modern setup. With primeval
Lankan instruments like the Ravanahatha (Ravanastron) and the Kingiri,
two locally based products which are yet to gain recognition and
acceptance in the global music arena, Dinesh had set on a mission to
unveil the truth which had lie hidden for centuries: the origin of music
is rooted in the Ravanahatha.
"The first ever reference made to music is unscripted in the
Ramayana. Legend has it that King Ravana, an strong devotee of the Hindu
God Shiva, used to strum heart rendering notes by swiping the codes of
the violin-like instruments with a bow to express his undying zeal to
President Mahinda Rajapaksa inspects
the Ravanahatha at the release of `Ravana Nada’, while Ven.
Athuraliye Rathana and Dinesh look on.
Thus this age old musical device played by the origins and made using
coconut shell and bamboo is noted as the first musical instrument to be
played with a bow in world music history," Dinesh revealed.
Taking a less trodden path the gifted musician recently emerged with
his debut CD, `Ravana Nada'. He presented his work comprising 12
instrumentals and two vocals to President Mahinda Rajapaksa on March 23.
The CD including the first collection of tunes to be played by the
Ravanahatha and compiled in an album is made up of a Hindi song penned
by actress Yashoda Wimaladharma and a song named `Me Aadarae'. Both
these tracks are sung by the members of Dee R Cee.
"Ven. Athuraliye Rathana took me to meet the President. I presented
the Ravanahatha, related the tale linked with its origin and
demonstrated a piece for him. He expressed great interest towards the
matter," he noted.
"Ven. Athuraliye Rathana also asked me to play some meditative music
using the Ravanahatha. He even promised to help me build an Institution
for this form of music."
Dinesh was recently awarded a scholarship to attend Academy Award
winning musician of the `Slumdog Millionaire' fame, A.R. Rahman's Music
Academy in Chennai. He was given this unique opportunity after one of
Rahman's close friends, Abdul Hameed, had witnessed the youth performing
during an event before dropping a word to Rahman. Dinesh is the first
Sri Lankan to be offered the chance to study at the prestigious
"President Mahinda Rajapaksa had expressed his desire to contribute
to the expenses during my stint in India. I also wish to thank Ven.
Athuraliye Rathana, actors Ravindra Randeniya, Cletus Mendis, Geetha
Kumarasinghe and Pubudu Chathuranga, former Chairman of the National
Film Corporation Asoka Serasinghe, B.H. Abdul Hameed, Nimal
Lakshapathiarachchi, Ganga Sudharshi, ANCL Chairman Bandula Padmakumara,
Maharaja Group Head Raja Mahendran, my recording engineer Pragash Bosco
(son of music director Anton John Bosco), my parents and many others who
had been my pillars of strength," he added.It all began from childhood.
With a father who played for the Sri Lankan Navy band and a bother who
was a promising violinist, Dinesh's link with music was pre-determined.
His thirst to carve a niche for himself in the musical scene emerged
later as opportunities to play for the professional orchestra under the
guidance of Stanley Peiris, the symphony orchestra through Ananda Dabare
and Hasini Halpe and leading the orchestra for maestro Premasiri
Khemadasa's `Agni' opera came his way. He had contributed to each of
Master's musical compositions and composed music for 28 teledramas, five
documentaries and 10 stage plays. In addition the artiste had worked
under around 70 music directors and provided music for nearly 1000 audio
songs as well as provided music for 75 teledramas and 25 movies to music
composed by others.
"I have composed music for Sunil Costa and Sanjaya Nirmal's teledrama
`Sihina Wasanthaya' . Sriyani Amarasena's newest teledrama `Sivupath
Rena' and Joseph Jerome's `Ahankara Nagare', both which are slotted to
be telecast soon include my music compositions. My first music
composition for a song in a film, Channa Perera's second movie and
Sirasa's program `Punchi Pahe Mang', is also on the list," he noted.
He is working on his second CD, `Feel My Heart', an M Entertainment
product which will hit the market soon. The album is made up of relaxing
melodies with a romantic aura. Around 14 musical tracks played by the
violin will be included in `Feel My Heart'. Music provided by the
Ravanahatha too comes into play, he said.
Always eager try his hands at something new, the old boy of St.
Peter's college, Bambalapitiya, recently directed music for a passion
Visharada Nanda Malini along with a troupe from Duwa staged a passion
play, directed by Clement Fernando with music directed by Dinesh, during
the event. The passion play taken up by the team was noted as the second
oldest passion play in the world after Germany's Ober Ammergau. Staged
after 20 years the music had been redesigned to take form of music
similar to that found in operas. This is done so that it will suit the
modern society while appealing to the universal audience, he noted.
"My aim is to use my talent to uplift Buddhism. Many individuals
linked with the Buddhism helped me in many ways," said the artiste who
hopes to fly to India within the next few months. He could be contacted
through his e- mail address:
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