Tri-service personnel whose bravery and commitment to the cause brought about a new era of peace to the terrorism-affected Sri Lanka, are now set to turn another new leaf in the sphere of music, this time while trying to grab the year’s ‘Rana Viru Real Star’ title.
The mammoth Reality Show, to be telecast shortly over the national television channel saw its birth as a concept, mooted by Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary Defence who maintains that battle fatigue hundreds of War Heroes who sweated day and night in the recent past in defence of the motherland’s territorial integrity, deserves a respite for rest, recreation and entertainment.
Wednesday (3) evening’s selection of the best out of a total of 75 aspirants at Panagoda Army Cantonment to qualify for the title of ‘Rana Viru Real Star’, drew an overwhelming enthusiasm and excitement from thousands of music-loving tri-service personnel who had thronged there to see how their fellow-singing stars were showcasing rhythmic talents in the presence of Mr Gotabaya Rajapaksa, Secretary Defence, the Chief Guest on the occasion, Mrs Ioma Rajapaksa, President, Ministry of Defence Seva Vanitha Branch, Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya, Commander of the Army, Mrs Manjulika Jayasuriya, President, Seva Vanitha Army Branch (SVAB), Mr Sarath Kongahage, Chairman, Sri Lanka Rupavahini Cooperation, Mr Lakshman Hulugalle, Director General Media Centre for National Security, Senior tri-service officers and a special panel of judges.
300 Army soldiers, 125 sailors and 75 airmen competed for their slots in the preliminary rounds were picked up and all of them (500) were to go for their final rounds in batches before the best 75 were selected.
Yesterday’s inaugural round at Panagoda, the first before several rounds, was contested by 75 aspirants, though selected budding vocalists to be the final ‘Rana Viru Real Star’ were kept a secret until concluding rounds get underway. Those selections are to be done at the Army bases in Panagoda, Minneriya, Palaly and Saliyapura in the presence of SLRC musicians and professionals in the music industry.
The SLRC panel of judges is to finally select the most talented 152 Real Stars before they select the best on a staggered basis twice a week as the programme gathers momentum and is telecast in Rupavahini on Fridays and Saturdays beginning at 10.05 p.m. The final Rana Viru Real Star is to receive cash as well as valuable gifts.