|Sathis celebrates golden jubilee|
|By Susitha R. Fernando|
Veteran actor, filmmaker and teledrama director, Sathischandra Edirisinghe will be felicitated for his service to Sri Lankan art over the last fifty years on January 14 at his home town, Kelaniya.
Organised by ‘Nuwana Tharuna Hawula’ (Nuwana Youth Organisation), the felicitation ‘Sathischandra Prathibhanaya’ will start at 3 pm at Sarasavi Studio, Dalugama Kelaniya.
As a grade five student at Dharmaloka College, Kelaniya, Sathischandra showed his talent to act and this led him to render his voice to ‘Lamapitiya’ in Radio Ceylon in the year 1953.
Later as a student of St. Mary’s College, Elpitiya, Sathischandra played a role in Anton Chekhov’s ‘Proposal’ at Inter-school drama competition and was adjudged the Best Actor of the Southern Province.
With his role in John de Silva’s play ‘Wessanthara’, produced by J. D. A. Perera, the talented actor won much recognition as a stage star and this gave him the opportunity to play in the dramas directed by country’s leading playwrights like Gunasena Galappathi, Dayananda Gunawardane, Henry Jayasena, Sugathapala de Silva, R.R. Samarakoon, Sunanda Mahendra, Ranjit Dharmakeerthi, S. Karunaratne, Lucien Bulathsinghala and Dhamma Jagoda.
Sathischandra’s entry to big screen was in 1966 as a Buddhist priest in Reggie Perera’s ‘Sadol Kandulu’ and this followed a long and award winning journey with nearly 25 films to his credit. And playing a minor role in Dharmasiri Wickramaratne’s ‘Hima Kathara’, Sathischandra won the Best Supporting Actor at the Presidential Awards 1985.
Having succeeded as an actor, Sathischandra turned to filmmaking with ‘Matara Aachchi’ in 1973. The film was a landmark in the film music as it introduced his own brother Sunil Edirisinghe as a singer, Wally Nanayakkara as lyricist and Victor Ratnayake as a film music director who later made big names in country’s music arena.
‘Matara Aachchi’ was followed by ‘Raja Gedara Paraviyo’ (1975), ‘Sri Madara’ (1977), ‘Sathara Diganthaya’ (1981), ‘Adishtanaya’ (1982) and ‘Wadula’ (1984).
Sathischandra is also one of the pioneer actors in Sri Lankan teledrama history. He played in teledrama like ‘Ekamawakage Daruwo’, ‘Tharadevi’ and ‘Palingu Menike’ which were telecast at the early stages of television in the country.
Having succeeded as an actor in stage, mini-screen and silver screen, playwright and filmmaker, Sathischandra later entered as a teledrama director and producer. He produced eleven teledramas of which he directed seven.
Sathischandra was honoured with ‘Kala Suri’ and conferred with an honorary degree from the University of Kelaniya.