TV Guide Magazine  


Let’s watch how Super Star IS being filmed…
Musical Instruments specially imported for contest
By Harshani Weerarathne
Many channels introduced reality shows during the past two years. The Stars born were plenty. It is not wrong to say that the first channel to introduce both audiences and contestants to “Reality TV” was Sirasa.
The third phase of the show “Super Star Season Three” is in its final stages being filmed in the “Sirasa” studios in Ratmalana. With the idea of sharing the heat of their final showdown we were there.

The number of contestants in the third phase has whittled down to twenty eight now. Their songs are recorded in groups. The Ratmalana studio records songs of a group of eight on each Thursday and Sunday. Last week the day we entered the Ratmalana studio it was past 1 p.m. By then recordings had heated up the environs of the studio more than the blazing day had in store for us as stars were doing their acts. Te studio was also vibrant with their sweet songs and the music to go with it.

The contestants were gearing themselves with their best performances while their camaraderie with the band backing them developed fruitfully. Yet, the “Super Star” stage did not create any fright on the contestants. One person completes his turn, and then the other takes his roll with the band. After going through the number with the band the director Suresh Malliyadda says we will begin this way.
The others get into the “Ready Room” to catch tune of the number sung by their counter-part on stage. While this takes place the lighting, taping, volume controlling, and camera keeps rolling at a pace.

Precisely at this time we get chatting with the programme director Susara Dinal;
“Like it takes ten months for a mother to conceive and give birth to the child we take exactly the same time to produce the ‘Super Star’of this programme. Like the egg fertilising and turning into a child, beginning with hundred and five thousand we will be left with only the best in the final rounds.” We then asked him how he tackled the difficult treading of the avenue of getting to the best of best. Susara Dinal’s answer was “Last week the Sirasa Super Star reached a special point. Until then the entire judgement rested with the panel of judges, we broke away and took it to the people our audiences to select the Sirasa Super Star. The road up to that was difficult but once the panel cleared the way now people have the opportunity to make their choice by SMS. The first round of the third program started with hundred and seven thousand applicants, seventeen thousand were chosen for the second round. By the third round we had three thousand only. We chose thousand for the fourth round. There after we selected one hundred and out of that forty eight were given the chance by the panel of judges. With the heat turned on now eight contestants are dropped each week. The final twelve selected according to SMS will face the final round to select the Sirasa Star to wear the crown. The judges in selecting these winners went through a tough period as out of hundred of thousands of equally good performers to get at the best is a big question mark. But, our team managed to overcome all that today.”

To our question who were the better ones whether it was the third or second phase contestants? To which Susara’s answer was “Yes, the contestants in the third phase were far better than the ones in the first and second phases. About fifty percent out of the hundred and seven thousand that applied were thorough with the subject of music. It showed in their performance. The final selection is also full of thorough musicians. We are happy to say that the final twelve and the one to wear the crown out of that will give you the opportunity to see a great show. Susara did not forget to mention the great work contributed by the judges, the members of the band providing music and the music director.

“We have judges with great music minds who would not do injustice to performers, Jagath Wickramasinghe, Amal Perera, Chandrika Siriwardhana and Samitha Mudunkotuwa all look at the performers in a special way, broadmindedly. That different approach makes a great contribution in selecting the best as the ‘Super Star’. The selection of Suresh Malliyadda as the music director is a great in the ranks of the present new comers. His novelness his capability and experience has specially contributed in giving the programme clout. Every musician in the band is thoroughly experienced with instruments and its handling and their input has been a boon to the entire show”.

We were compelled to ask Susara about the new instruments imported especially for this show.
“We purchased some brand new equipment from abroad for the show. As we felt we should provide our audiences with a great mix of quality music new equipment was purchased in the form of a good quality violin from Europe, a Piano and drum set from Japan which we felt would provide the necessary heat and quality listening to our audiences. First we have to think of the contestants getting good sound to contribute to their performance, the entire audience that have flocked around ‘Sirasa Super Star’ to keep up with this programme also would benefit with the new instruments used, to listen to good quality music. That is our wish. We think they would get a fair deal”. Until all the eight contestants completed their turns none of them got any resting time.

In the meanwhile we went in search of Kamal Addaraarachchi. He is an indispensable player in the Sirasa Super Star story. He rested, while contestants were training, in the sound control room. In that noisy atmosphere too we managed to chat with him.

“Only twenty eight contestants are left now. There is a heavy competition amongst them. Their talent is ecsquisite. The people are the ones having most responsibility in selecting the next twenty four. It is imperative that people choose the most talented of the lot. Ousting one who is really outstanding by a meager SMS is unfortunate and could damage the entire image of the show. To keep them competing with each other is the responsibility of the people. Those with talent should get into the next round too. Only the best out of the best can give the show real meaning. Otherwise this Super Star if selected on the basis of popularity the show will for sure become meaningless”.

At times Kamal has to face embarrassing moments during the show. He explained to us one such incident.
“In these type of TV show the mind and body work together. Such situations can be most embarrassing. Once I had to mention the names of contestants waiting their turn while recording was going on. There I showed the audience number four with my hand, the audience went wild with laughter and I was confused but soon realised that my fingers showed only three fingers. Such moments are a plenty. The audience eagerly waits for a moment where I make a boo boo to laugh. That gives all a momentary break from the monotony of listening to one voice throughout”.
We got in touch with the panel of judges who were there from the beginning to find out their views on the show.

Jagath Wickramasinghe was of the view that “Selecting forty eight from a hundred and seven thousand is indeed a formidable task. Now it is the turn of the people to take them forward from here on. I am sure they will do a good job”.

Contestants as well as the audience was of the opinion that Amal Perera was too tough with the parties taking part, we therefore asked him about what he felt?
He said “Only a few contestants are left over in the competition now. The decisions will not differ simply because the numbers are few. Whether they can sing or cannot sing will be openly spoken about to the contestants. Their mistakes too will be explained to them”.

Samitha was also asked about her thoughts. She replied “I personally think there are more talented people here in the third phase than did in the 2nd or 3rd phase of Sirasa Super Star. Selecting the forty eight was an uphill task. That is because this competition is full of talent. In my selections I always gave the talented a fair deal. I will always standby talent and if some talented entity gets ousted on the SMS selections it brings tears to my eyes”.

Through the panel judging the contestants and people who SMS their selections in another four months another ‘Sirasa Super Star’ will be born.

(Translated by Dyan Pathiravithana)
Pix by Ravindra Dharmathilake

Prasad - Journalist by profession, singer at leisure
By Sarashi Samarasinghe
He has been in the music field for more than 15 years. He has mastered various types of music such as folk, bhath kanda and karanataka. He is none other than Prasad Karunamuni who is a journalist by profession and a singer while he is at leisure.

“I am from Anguruwathota and I attended Madurawela Maha Vidyalaya until my Ordinary Level (O/L) examination and continued my secondary education at Sri Palee College in Horana,” said Karunamuni.
According to Karunamuni he has been interested in music since seven years.

“I first learned music under Amitha Athukorale who was my music teacher in school at that time,” he added.
Karunamuni further emphasised that he has followed music for his O/L examination as well as for his Advanced Level (A/L) examination.
“I followed the Arts stream for my A/L studying subjects such as Sinhala, Political Science and Buddhist Culture,” he said.
According to Karunamuni he won the first place at the inter-school folk music competition which was held in 1991.

“Lionel Ranwale was the judge of this competition. By getting to know my talents Ranwale requested me to join his folk music troupe. I was at the troupe from 1991 to 2002,” stated Karunamuni.
Karunamuni has presented two individual shows, one at the Tower Hall in 1990 and the other at the Elphinstone theatre in 1993.
“Both the shows were named ‘Prasad Gee’ which included some of my own creations as well as Hindi songs,” he added.

According to Karunamuni the originals which were sung by him at the concert were ‘Sitha Kurutu Ga’, ‘Kashmire’ along with many others.
“The lyrics of the songs were done by Mervin Priyantha for which I received a lot of good responses from my friends, relatives along with my loved ones,” stated Karunamuni.

Karunamuni further emphasisd that while he was at the folk music troupe he has participated in many avurudu programmes which were done by the Sri Lanka Rupavahini Corporation (SLRC) and the Independence Television Network (ITN).
Karunamuni has studied Hindustani Ragadhari music under Nanda Malani in 1999 and completed the Bhath Khanda music diploma in 2002.

He has also studied Karnataka music under Arundathi Sri Ranganadan from 2000 to 2006.
“While I was studying Karnataka music I recorded my first song ‘Sonduru Kawak’ in the year 2001 which was written by Nihal Wickrama Edirisuriya and music composed by Harsha Randimal,” said Karunamuni.
He has also received a lot of responses for that song and the song has been used by many mobile service providing companies as a ring tone.

“A visual for this song was done by Suranga Fernando,” he added.
In addition to ‘Sonduru Kawak’, Karunamuni has also done some other audios for Sirasa TV, Diganthaya programme such as ‘Kothek Keewada’, ‘Mage Sithe’, ‘Sandata Rahasi’, ‘Rupun Oda Theda’, ‘Adari’ along with many others.

According to Karunamuni, there has been none other of his family who is connected to the music field.
Karunamuni could be reached through 071 8128853 or could snail mail him to, Prasad Karunamuni, Uduwara, Anguruwathota.

(Pic by Chathura S.Kodikara)


Genelia in back in Kollywood
The sensuous hottie sends every guy in town insomniac and never intends to go unnoticed. Her cute bubbly looks and chirpy mannerisms keep us enchanted all the time. Followed by Santhosh Subramaniam, the actress did not turn up here as she was busy with Hindi and Telugu projects.

Now, she makes comeback for the Tamil remake of ‘Ready’ with Dhanush in lead role and Jawahar Mithran wielding the megaphone.

The original version of ‘Ready’ had Ram in lead and same Genelia starring opposite him in female lead. The film proved to be a great entertainer and crossed 175 days and already the Kannada version with Puneeth Rajkumar and Priyamani is nearing completion.

Sudhir’s faith in Shiney Ahuja
While many have passed judgment on Shiney Ahuja’s character, good friend and director Sudhir Mishra has not lost hope in Shiney.

Shiney Ahuja debuted with Sudhir Mishra with Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi back in 2005. Both - the film and Shiney’s performance - were critically appreciated, and Shiney found his standing in the Industry. He then went on to work with Mishra in Khoya Khoya Chand with Soha Ali Khan, which got a lukewarm response from both critics and audiences. But apart from a professional relationship, Sudhir and Shiney share a close friendship. Sudhir had already planned his third film with Shiney when news of his rape case surfaced. The actor was jailed and was only just released on bail.

When Sudhir was asked about how he felt about the entire situation, he said, “It is indeed very sad news, and I am shocked with all that is transpired. But I know Shiney on a personal level and he is a wonderful human being.