Rising Star Tharindi | Sunday Observer

Rising Star Tharindi

25 September, 2022

Tharindi Fernando or to give her full name, Liyanage Tharindi Anuradhika Fernando is a rising star in the firmament of the silver screen. This talented and versatile actress’s performance in the recently released The Game has really resonated in the hearts and minds of moviegoers.

The story revolves round the hunt for a band of terrorists.

The film is directed by Suranga de Alwis and veteran actor Ranjan Ramanayake plays the male lead, Tharindi brings to life the character of his girlfriend, the female lead.

Childhood and schooling

Tharindi was born and bred in Pallansena, Kochchikade, Negombo. Her father Andrew Fernando worked in the construction industry as a mason and mother Asunta was a housewife. She has an elder sister Nalindi, who later chose banking as a profession.

Tharindi had her primary education at the Pallansena Prathamika Vidyalaya (primary school) and her secondary education at St. Anne’s Mixed School, Daluwakotuwa and at the Dankotuwa Balika Maha Vidyalaya.

During her school days, Tharindi participated in dramas, sports and dancing. She did Kandyan dancing and also Bharatha Natyam to some extent. Tharindi gratefully acknowledges the support given to her by her Pallansena Primary School dancing teacher, Royce Fernando and his wife Neranjala.

She sat for her GCE Advanced Level in the Commerce stream and was successful obtaining an A, a B and a C..

A career in finance

However, entering the portals of a University did not appeal to Tharindi. She chose to follow in the footsteps of her elder sister, Nalindhi who was also her inspiration and mentor. So, she joined a private finance company.

Even before she finished her Advanced Levels Tharindhi had successfully obtained two qualifications in banking. She obtained the Certificate of Banking and Finance (CBS) and the Diploma of Banking and Finance (BBS). This certainly stood her in good stead when it came to choosing a career in finance.

After three years Tharindi resigned from this institution and joined a reputed private bank.


While serving at the Bank, tragedy struck Tharindi and her family. Mother Asunta succumbed to a heart attack. She had also been battling cancer while her family did their utmost to save her.

Devastated, Tharindi decided to resign from the bank and submitted her resignation. However, the bank did not want to lose such an exemplary staff member and informed her that they would re-employ her when she opted to come back.

Tharindi wanted time to come to terms with her loss and also support her family. Elder sister Nalindhi held a good position and it would not have been feasible for her to give up her job.

Kandyan and Bollywood dancing

Time helped Tharindi to face her loss with some equanimity. Whiling away her time at home did not did not appeal to Tharindi and she looked for ways and means to spend her time productively. She opted to follow Kandyan and Bollywood dancing under well-known teacher Gayan Srimal. Little did Tharindi know that this would be the ‘open sesame’ to the world of movies and teledramas for her.

First movie role

It was at one of these classes that her talent was spotted and she was offered her first movie role in ‘Barathali’, a movie directed by Charith Abeysinghe. Tharindi plays the main role which is that of a dancing teacher who has relocated to the village from the city. The cast includes Abeysinghe and Shiromika Fernando among others. It is yet to be released.

Those in the industry who saw Tharindi’s performance in ‘Barathali’ and she received offers for future movies.

Second movie

Her second movie was ‘President Superstar’ directed by top director Udayakantha Waranasuriya. The movie plot revolves around a reality show intended to select the best qualified presidential aspirant. Veteran actors Gihan Fernando, Mahendra Perera and Isuru Loku Hettiarachchi as well as popular actress Gyathri Dias were among the star studded cast.This movie was screened about two years ago.

Asked what she felt about facing the cameras for the first time Tharindi said that she felt the nervousness any novice would feel. But she said that she also had much self confidence and the encouragement given by senior cast members made her confident and that she was able to do justice to the role.

She also followed a workshop of Mahendra Perera’s which helped widen her horizons in no small measure.

A great fortune

In her acting career Tharindi considers it her great fortune to have had the opportunity to be cast with many senior actors and actresses. She has learnt much from them and is still learning according to her. Among the seniors she has had the fortune to work with are Mahendra Perera, Gihan Fernando, Ranjan Ramanayake, Kumara Thirimadura, Ramya Wanigasekera, Shiromika Fernando and Vishwa Kodikara.


In the realm of teledramas too Tharindi has shown her prowess. She plays the supporting role in ‘Ralla Weralata Adarei’ which is currently being telecast over Hiru TV. She is a girl in a fisher folk community in love with a city man who does not return her. She loves him in silence.

Directed by Niwanthaka Prasara the drama features Mahendra Perera, Kumara Thirimadura and Jayani Senanayake among others.

Her first teledrama was Pahasara directed by Sadun Rajakaruna.In this Tharindi portrays a lawyer in search of her father’s murderer.

Tharindi is currently busy shooting Supun Rathnayake’s teledrama, ‘Thathparayak Denna’. Shalani Tharaka and Pujana Dandeniya and many other top actors and actresses are included in the glittering casy.

Film industry in Sri Lanka

Asked about the film industry in Sri Lanka, Tharindi said that the country has ample facilities to reach international level. Extremely talented directors, actors and actresses, script writers and lyricist, cameramen and all other human resources needed are right here in the country. Beautiful locations are there too. According to her, the Sri Lanka movie industry has developed technologically too though in this area there is still room for development and improvement. This talented actress thinks positively about the future of the local movie industry.

Her advice to aspiring actors and actresses is “Do not enter this field for popularity and fame.” She says the passion for acting, the ability to work hard, team spirit and discipline are must to succeed in the acting industry.

The desire to learn is a cornerstone in the acting industry emphasises Tharindi. If possible it is good to follow workshops and similar events she says. Otherwise, her advice is to learn on the job while watching the veterans in the acting industry.

A devout Catholic, Tharindi firmly believes that it is the Lord’s grace which gives her everything including the strength to bear even what is supposed to be unbearable.

Tharindi is a fitness fan and spends much time at the gym doing exercises and following other means to keep fit.

Future aspirations

What of Tharindi’s future aspirations?. She wants to be a top class character actress and fulfill her mother’s dream of Tharindi becoming a talented and popular actress. She also wants to study Bollywood dancing further.