For the third year in a row, on 22 April 2023, the Embassy of Sri Lanka in Russia together with the Marfino Center for Culture and Leisure and the Sri Lankan community in Russia organized a Sinhala and Tamil New Year Festival in the Moscow-area.
The event gathered around 200 guests including students of the Marfino Center, locals of the Marfino village, Sri Lankan students and representatives of Sri Lankan community in Russia. All the visitors were able to participate in various outside competitions and contests, such as eyeing the blind elephant, sack run, breaking the pot, tug of war, pillow fighting and others.
Alongside the contests, the guests could swing on the beautifully decorated swings, take a picture with the elephants dressed in traditional 'perahera' outfits, enjoy the exhibition of Sri Lankan cultural items and decorate Russian traditional trays. The guests were also treated to scrumptious Sri Lankan New Year dishes and Ceylon tea.
The outside games, which finished with a traditional Russian group dance 'khorovod' around the elephant, was followed by a concert prepared by the performace groups of Marfino, Sri Lankan students of the RUDN University and children of the Embassy staff. The highlight of the event was the traditional Sri Lankan song Erabadu Mal Pipila performed by the Marfino choir Azure Saphire in Sinhala and Russian languages in a truly professional manner.
The merge of the Sri Lankan and Russian cultures was a signature trait of this year's celebration. This was also displayed in the course of the Awurudu Prince and Princess competitions where, the Sri Lankan competitors were performing Russian songs, while the Russian contestants surprised the public with Sri Lankan dances. The event finished with the awarding ceremony of the winners of the Awurudu Prince and Princess competition.
The special guests of the event: Prof. Janitha A. Liyanage, H. E, the Ambassador of Sri Lanka to the Russian Federation, Ms. Irina Anatolyevna Hozyayskaya, Acting Head of the Directorate for Culture of the Urban District Mitishy, and Mr. Alexey Alexandrovich Kukin, Director of the Marfino Center for Culture and Leisure, expressed their gratitude to all the organizers of the colourful event and expressed their wish to conduct it in the next year as well.
The Embassy would like to use this opportunity to express its heartfelt appreciation to the administration, staff and students of the Marfino Center for their efforts to make this event a success, as well as to the Sri Lankan community in Russia and the students of the RUDN University for their invaluable contribution to the celebration.