Dulaj makes it big | Sunday Observer

Dulaj makes it big

Up and coming young actor Dulaj Chamara Hasalanka won the Best Actor Award at the State Chidren’s Drama Festival in 2018 for his outstanding performance in the drama Chooti baba loku lamayek (the little baby is a big child now). Youth Observer had a chat with this versatile youngster about his passion for acting.

Q: How did you get started in acting?

I got into acting in 2009. My first drama was Kammaliya Panala Giya by Pubudu Subhashana Kurugala. It won the second place in the school drama festival.

Q: How has your journey been since then?

I won the award for best actor for my performance in Chooti baba loku lamayek under the limited category in the State Drama Festival 2011. In 2012, I won awards for the best supporting -actor in both open and limited English categories. Then in 2013, I was the best actor in the English open category. After that, in 2018, I won the best actor award at the State Children’s Drama Festival for the drama The Yawning Prince by Daminda Prasad Nandarathna. It is my best achievement so far.

Q: Did The Yawning Prince receive any other awards?

Yes. It won the awards for the best script, best drama-second place, best supporting actor, best supporting actress and for best creation of props.

Q: Do you hope to become a professional actor?

Yes. That is my dream and I’m already working on it. Even when I was very small, I participated in fancy dress competitions and I always wanted to be an actor.

Q: Did you study drama before getting into the field?

No. I didn’t specifically study it. I studied drama for the Advanced Level. I think i it is the passion for acting that gave me this talent. When I watch teledramas, plays or movies, I observe the techniques and try to learn from the professionals.

Q: What are the other things you are good at?

I dubbed for the Chandi cartoon character in Sirasa. I think dubbing too can help actors to improve their performances.

Q: Have you contributed to teledramas?

Yes. My first teledrama, Andura Bindi Sanda by S.K. Vithana was telecast on ITN in 2012. Then, I contributed to Naththal Geethaya by Saman Kumara Liyanage and I did the character of Arunalu in the teledrama One Way by Lalith Rathnayake. Currently, I’m an artiste at National Radio.

Q: Who are your role models?

Hemasiri Liyanage, Janak Premalal, Douglas Siriwardana, Harindra Dassanayake and Subhashana Kurugala influenced me to learn and grow as an artiste. I was fortunate enough to be their student. My first teacher is Harindra Dassanayake.

Q: What kind of response and support do you get from your family?

My parents help me to achieve my goals. This is not a stream which many people choose to follow. Most of the parents also don’t want their children to become artistes or actors; instead they want them to be doctors and engineers. I feel so blessed to have supportive parents and family. So, I would like to thank my parents, my brother, my school, Horana Vidyaarathna Vishwavidyaa Peetaya, my teachers - Subhashana Kurugala, Harindra Dassanayake and the Venerable late Opalle Gnanasiri Thero for all the backing and encouragement they gave me.

Q: What are your future productions?

One movie called Eka Raane Kurullo is coming up and I’ve got invitations for dubbings and teledramas. I hope to choose some of them and give them of my best.