An architect & engineer by profession Navin Goonaratna has contributed largely to the development of the same field in his early days.
The repercussions of the 1983 communal riots lured him to venture in to making of the film "A Thousand Flowers" which themed the message of peace through dance, music, art and featured actors and dancers from around the world.
His ardent love for performing arts led him to found the Sama Ballet in 1985, the first privately funded professional dance company in Sri Lanka, and the Sama International Trust with the objective of spreading the message of peace through performing arts and inter religious dialogue, Navin was the president of “CIOFF” (International organization for Folklore Festivals and Folk art affiliated to UNESCO)
In his vision of building a full- fledged Dance Company he inculcated the idea of professionalism total commitment, discipline & artistic perfection in his dancers, thus becoming a mentor & inspiration to many young artists who are well established leading choreographers & dance director of Sri Lanka today.
Religion and arts being the substance of his endeavors today Navin Goonaratna chairs the light of Asia Foundation, continuing his original idea of world peace through the arts. The first film produce by the foundation "Siddhartha Gouthama" involving an international cast is currently being screened earning great accolade around the world.
The Sama Ballet which was established in 1985 is Sri Lanka's first full time professional dance company funded by an all private organization, The Sama International Trust. The word "Sama" means, peace in Sinhala and Tamil which are the official Languages of Sri Lanka.
Mr. Asitha Perera
Mr. Kushil Gunasekara