Kalana De Silva was born in Sri Lanka in 1976 and has been passionate about the guitar throughout his entire career. He studied at The Maris Stella College, Negombo. His first inspiration came through his father who was a guitarist and a singer; he taught him the initial steps of playing the guitar. Later, he had the privilege of studying classical guitar under the most dedicated and talented teachers such as Mr Jude Peris, Sherly Mendis, Maurice Soyza, Sisira Fernando & Ms Christine Wikremanyaka. Mr Jude Peiris has been his mentor and teacher and nurtured his career up to this stage; he still continues to work with him to develop the guitar pedagogies and to improve resources for learning the guitar, especially in Sri Lanka.
He currently holds a Fellow of Trinity College London (FTCL) as his highest qualification in guitar. He is the only Sri Lankan ever to achieve this qualification for this instrument. He also has completed a Masters’ degree in education at Hope University, Liverpool where he wrote his dissertation ‘Implementing improvisation during classical based instrumental lessons’. He has been working in the United Arab Emirates for the past 20 years and is especially dedicated to teaching. He currently holds the Head of Guitar position in one of the most prestigious schools in the region.
Apart from teaching, he has the ability to perform in various genres and with different types of guitars; this has afforded him the opportunity to play with many outstanding musicians and at prestigious events. His ability to play the acoustic guitar, electric and bass guitars along with his main instrument, classical guitar, has led to exploring genres such as Classical, Jazz, Celtic, Flamenco, Rock, Blues and Pop. Here are a few significant events and groups that he has been involved in throughout the years:
- From 2008 he was the guitarist in Abu Dhabi Big Band and Little Band where they performed many corporate gigs across the UAE.
- His first maiden solo concert ‘Triadic tunnel’ was a huge success in Sri Lanka in 2015.
- He has been involved in many musicals such as Les Misérables, Cats, Oliver, Blood Brothers etc.
- He performed with choir groups such as ADCG and performed gigs and events with violinists.
- In 2016 he was invited to perform ‘Frozen’ with the UAE National Symphony Orchestra.
- Currently he performs with the Saadiyat Big Band and a Trio which involves Flute, Flugelhorn and Guitar
- He plays the Bass and Guitar in a band called ‘The Collective’.
Apart from playing music his other hobbies are photography and videography – he spends much time experimenting with these artforms and enjoys developing his skills. Furthermore he does audio and video editing and edits his own work. Due to his ability to read and write music he arranges and writes his own music.