Charitha still lives at her birth place at Mirihana, Nugegoda adjoining the Mirihana Police Grounds, which is the ancestral home of her mother Pushpa Wijeratne. “My mother died in 2001 after a brief illness. It’s a great void,” she sighs. Charitha’s father, Ariyadasa Peiris was also one time a famous radio artiste who had introduced many young, up and coming singers to the nation. And Edward Jayakody was also one such young singer who stepped into the field through these programmes.
Charitha is the youngest of the family. Her sister, Malika was never interested in stepping into the field of arts. Nor did their father Ariyadasa like the idea when Charitha showed interest in becoming an announcer.
But even when she was at school at Anula Vidyalaya, Nugegoda, not a single school ceremony passed without it been compered by Charitha. “Hmm… school days were fabulous. Our class was one of the best classes in the grade comprising nine senior prefects and students with aesthetic talent.
Even Deepika Priyadarshani Peiris who has been among the top singers in Sri Lanka was also in our class. Ours was a very united class. Even if we saw somebody in a bad mood, we would crack a joke to make her smile. I studied Kandyan dancing under Mrs. Daya Nellampitiya and Christine Dissanayake at school. But I took part in musical programmes through out. I was in the Eastern band and played almost all the instruments. I did guiding and netball..hmm.. that’s all,” she says.
“The biggest mistake I did in my life was deciding to do Bio science for my A/Ls. My father wanted me to become a doctor and never liked me stepping into the field of art. But since 1984, I have been getting involved with programmes the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation.
It was my father’s younger brother, Jayantha Peiris who gave me a helping hand to enter SLBC. And my mother was also with me through out encouraging me. So after A/Ls I joined SLBC full time. ‘Sonduru Sevena’ in 1985, was my first programme.
I lent a voice cut for. It was a live programme. I became a Relief Announcer in 1994, a News Reader in 1995 and then a Drama Artiste after a few years. I studied music under Edward and then under late Victor B. Perera and passed the SLBC test as a ‘Grade A’ singer as well,” she reminisces.