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Tag Archives: Sunday Times (SL)

‘It is the living we should fear’

DISCLAIMER: Ten years ago, I reviewed Shehan Karunatilaka’s debut novel, Chinaman, for this newspaper. It was brilliant, I said, and everyone should buy it. I noted, though, for form’s sake, that I’d done some light proofreading of the manuscript, and hoped that this would not be taken either as cause or symptom of inoperable bias. [...]

Living in a ghost town

Ten years ago, I wrote the world’s first review of Chinaman, for the Sri Lankan Sunday Times. Last week, I interviewed Shehan Karunatilaka at the launch of his new novel, Chats with the Dead, at Barefoot Gallery. Here are the (brutally-abbreviated) highlights of those proceedings. – For The Sunday Times (SL)

Master class

An evening with Kumar Sangakkara. – For the Sri Lankan Sunday Times

Applause for thought?

Midori Goto’s violin recital in Colombo, reviewed. (Along with half the audience.) – For the Sunday Times (SL)

15 years of laughing at ‘Art’

Critic (and diarist) ASH Smyth reflects on the pitfalls of modern art, the vagaries of friendship, and the comic role he’s always wanted.   ‘My friend Serge has bought a painting…’  1997. Ish . See ‘Art’, Yasmina Reza’s comedy of mannerism, for the first time (Wyndhams Theatre, London). Show has hit the West End running: [...]

Bach – plus bite

CMSC The Bach Concert 2010 When Glenn Gould said he’d take the music of Bach with him to the proverbial desert island he failed to specify which Bach. It’s fair to assume, though, he did not mean all of them. In a concert sponsored by – whom else? – the German Embassy, the Chamber Music [...]

Horses for courses

SOSL Première Concert Like a veteran sprinter in a distance race, the Symphony Orchestra of Sri Lanka was quickly away, found stride of genuine grace and quality, travelled well, and then, all-too-predictably, weakened through the latter furlongs until eventually, but barely, making the finish. They came out of the gate with Dvorak’s Cello Concerto in [...]

Don’t evoke me…

Eshantha Peiris, piano, Lionel Wendt Theatre A piano, a pianist, and a soft white light. Good, I think. Good. Neat. Clean. Then I see the banner projected onto the backcloth. It is 15ft by 6, at least. It says ‘EVOCATIVE’.  The pianist begins to play. The banner remains. Sort of. Now it plays a slide-show [...]

O worship the Lord with the beauty of… oh, Mendelssohn.

te Deum veneramur – A Celebration of Sacred Music  Last Saturday’s Colombo Philharmonic Choir gig was sold to me almost solely on the strength of the acoustic in Ladies’ College chapel – being as it is not the Ladies’ College auditorium. But I confess I was also in a hurry to hear some good church music [...]

SOSL steppes up

In a programme frankly unimaginable by any orchestra not at the very top of its game, it was depressing to see the Symphony Orchestra of Sri Lanka open last Sunday’s concert with a return to ‘form’, another slack and soupy rendition of their own national anthem. The second national anthem was rather rousing – the [...]