From classroom to the ramp | Sunday Observer

From classroom to the ramp

Representing Sri Lanka, his motherland at a World Pageant was Manoj de Silva’s dream from his teen years and the dream came true in 2019 when he represented Sri Lanka at the Mr. World pageant in Manila, Phllipines.

This young man hailing from the ancient hill capital Kandy had a keen interest in fashion and modeling and joined Hailey Perera’s Modelling Academy in Kandy and learnt the ABCs of walking the ramp there.

From 2015, he has been modeling for TV commercials and fashion shows. He has appeared in TV commercials for Pegasus Reef Hote, Bajaj Pulsar N S, Mobitel and Hutch among others. For the Serenade Fashion Show Manoj showcased beach wear.

After joining iconic fashion designer Lou Ching Wong’s Modelling Academy, Manoj modeled for a major charity, fashion event, the organised by Lou Ching Wong.

Manoj heard about the Mr. World Sri Lanka Pageant organiised by Siyatha from Lou Ching and applied for it. In the mini pageants Manoj bagged the title of Mr. Personality. Manoj de Silva was crowned Mr. World Sri Lanka at the grand finale held on fifth June, 2019 and got the opportunity to represent Sri Lanka at the Mr. World Pageant 2019. This gala event was held at the Novetel, Manila’s Smart Araneta Coliseum. For the talent contest Manoj performed a traditional dance choreographed by Shamitha Hettige. A costume based on the Kohomba Deiyo’s (Kohomba Deity) costume created by Ranil Wijesekera.

Manoj made it to the top ten in three pageants at the Mr. World creating a record for this was the first time a contestant from Sri Lanka had made it to the Top Ten at the Mr. World contest. Manoj made it to the Top Ten in the Mr. Talent contest as well as the Fitness and Physique contest. He also reached the Top Ten in the social media ratings for the Best Model Physique.

He is a graduate in Zoology from the Open University of Sri Lanka and an old boy of two leading schools in the hill capital, Kingswood and Dharmaraja Colleges.

Manoj is a teacher by profession and he loves teaching. His first teaching experience was at the Buddhist Institute at Sri Subodharamaya in Peradeniya.

Currently Manoj is a biology teacher at Lyceum International School in Nugegoda and teaches grades nine and ten where the students will be sitting for their Cambridge O/Ls.

Diet wise Manoj is careful to eat a protein high diet which includes egg whites, oats, chicken breasts and protein shakes. He is particular about exercising and visits the gym regularly. This very fashion conscious young man favours denims and t’shirts for casual wear and formal attire for occasions.

A lover of nature and environment Manoj engages in environmental protection activities such as beach clean ups. He loves to travel within Sri Lanka and Sigiriya, Dambulla and Hikkaduwa are hot favourites with him.

He is a keen reader of articles on stress relief and is always willing to share tips on it with youngsters.

Manoj resides in Athurugiriya with his parents and younger sister. His father Nandana de Silva is a retired warrant officer in the Air force while mother Malani Udagedera is a housewife. Younger sister Roshani is an undergraduate at the local campus of the Kaitsu International University in Japan.

Manoj is very grateful to Siyatha TVand Sangeetha Weerarathne and Shereen Kumaratunge, Dhanajaya Bandara, Fouzul Hameed and Hameedias,Lou Ching Wong, Brian Kerkoven,Tivon of Fitness Connection Gym, Crossfit trainer Kamal Jayatilleke,Benny Designs, Hiran Wijesekera, Shamitha Hettige and Leadership trainer Asitha Pinnaduwa for helping him achieve his success.

Asked about his future plans Manoj said he aims to be at the top of the local and global fashion and modeling scenarios. Good luck Manoj. ND