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Ananda Samarakoon


Ananda Samarakoon

Biography


Egodahage George Wilfred Alwis Samarakoon (13 January 1911 – 2 April 1962) known as Ananda Samarakoon was a Sri Lankan composer and musician. He composed the Sri Lankan national anthem “Sri Lanka Matha” and is considered the father of artistic Sinhala music and founder of the modern Sri Lankan Geeta Sahitya (Song Literature)
In 1937, the popular music of Sri Lanka consisted of songs derived from the North Indian Ragadhari music. These songs lyrics often contained meaningless phrases with little or no literary merit. Samarakone set out to create a form of a music that can be classified as Sri Lanka’s own and came out with the song Ennada Menike (එන්නද මැණිකේ) (1940) that paved the foundation for the artistic Sinhala music. In 1940, he composed Namo Namo Mata to instill patriotism and love for one’s country, in his students at Mahinda College.It was first sung by little Mahindians at the prestigious Olcott Hall. That song was later selected as the National anthem of Sri Lanka by the Sri Lankan government.
The love themed song Endada Menike unfolds in the form of a dialogue between a young village boy and a girl. Poetic and beautifully rustic, it became a success and Samarakone followed it with a string of successful songs in the early to mid-1940s, the period considered his golden age. Among his best known works are:
• Podimal Etano (පොඩීමල් එතනෝ)
• Vilay Malak Pipila
• Poson Pohoda
• Asay madura
• Sunila Guvanay
• Punchi Suda
• Nilvala Gangay
• Sumano
• Pudamu Kusum
• Siri Saru Saara Ketay





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