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Breaf of Founder
Janakaraliya - Theatere Of the People
Janakaraliya Theatere Of the People

Breaf of Founder

Parakrama Niriella - Founder of Janakaraliya Mobile Theatre (Theatre Of the People), An Alternate Aesthetic Social Intervention in Sri Lanka. He Studied Drama & Theatre from the Art Centre Theatre Academy of the Lionel Wendt Memorial Centre in Colombo from 1974. His career began as a Pioneer member of the first Street Drama group in Sri Lanka and later expanded his creative activities into the fields of Cinema and Television where he has number of productions which brought him fame and prestigious awards locally and internationally. Most of his themes were based on the development of humanity and has also discussed co-existence between man and nature, in his creations. Since 2003, his main responsibility and devotion has been taking of "Jana Karaliya" (Theatre of the people) Mobile Theatre and its Travelling multi-ethnic drama group throughout the country. To convey the social message of plurality and peace in society that is accepted as historically necessary in the context of the much polarized conflict, Niriella's "Janakaraliya" was conceived and developed as a multi-ethnic, multi-religious and multi-linguistic group of young professional theatre artistes. It was also understood that this had to have mobility to reach the majority of the rural marginalized people and folk artists who had no access to social dialogue, exchange of experience and exposure to new thinking and approaches.

(1) Research work and special experiences on using theatre art for social and cultural harmony forming Janakaraliya – Theatre Of the People

Janakaraliya – Theatre Of the People develop and promote Sri Lankans' first ever multi cultural theatre group that travels across the country with a Mobile theatre. The Janakaraliya team activities were designed to be multi-cultural and bilingual from the very inception, a cardinal rule applied with dedication in all their creative work. Young people from all parts of the country and communities were brought together and trained in all aspects of performing art and social articulation to work in a multi-cultural environment. This approach was selected to first to prove to the audience that even multi religious communities with 02 different languages could work and create on their own without any personal or group inhibitions. Second was to bring together such groups to live a multicultural life on and off stage and third and finally to provide an opportunity to different youth from different areas to work together.
• The Drama Group "Janakaraliya" selected among the 10 best Cultural Groups in Asia-Pacific Region by the "Freedom to Create international" competition hold in 2010.
• "Janakaraliya" was given the membership of international "Theatre Of the Oppressed" chain.
• "Janakaraliya" was given the Cooperating Membership of the International Theatre Institute (ITI) of UNESCO

(2) Special Recognitions Internationally and Locally

• INTERNATIONAL HONARARY CITIZEN AWARD From the Government of United State of America in 1990.
• SPECIAL JURY PRIZE from the Golden Chest International TV Festival and Competition of Sofia, Bulgaria in 1985 for the Tele Film KADAIMA (The Boundary)
• TRANSTEL PRIZE from the Prix Futura International TV Festival and Competition of BERLIN in 1986 for the Tele Film KADAIMA (The Bounday)
• SILVER PRIZE from the 26th Competition of Cine andVideos on Japan in 1995 for the Documentary of KABUKI AND NOH DRAMA. Kala Shoori Award presented by the President of Sri Lanka in 2006
• Literary Award presented by the President of Sri Lanka in 2010
• Award for Life Time Achievement – Raigam Awards 2014
• President's Award for Life Time Achievement on service for Social Integration and Reconciliation.

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Janakaraliya Cultural Foundation, 238 A, Rajagiriya Road, SRI LANKA
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