GALLE CONCERTO 2024: 6 Festivals In Art, Food, Literature & Music; Call for Extended Stays on SL’s South Coast

During the South Coast peak season of January through March of 2024, the ‘Galle Concerto’ series gives impetus to a symphony of heritage and contemporary festivals in art, food, literature, and music.

Leading Lankan and international culture makers will be headlining the events - speaking, presenting and creating on topics pertinent and inspiring to Sri Lanka & the global momentum in 2024.

The festivals are independently led, with the coming together of a ‘Concerto’ of events - organized to amplify the positive economic and touristic impact of cultural programming to host communities and the
country - being conceived by H.E. President Wickremesinghe and supported by the Presidential Secretariat, SLTPB and SLTDA, and other ministries and local governmental bodies.

The full list of festivities, dates, and points for further information are listed below:

  1. Rhythms of Paradise, 12 - 14 January ‘24, Koggala, @rhythmsofparadise &
    The concerto’s opening programme will highlight Sri Lanka’s rich cultural, maritime and natural heritage focusing on drums, dance, classical and contemporary Sri Lankan literature, and biodiversity programming. The 3-day programme includes literary explorations, interactive interludes, cultural events, cinematic chronicles, workshops, excursions and exhibitions. The opening celebration and cultural events will be held at the Koggala Air Force Base and literary sessions will be held at the Martin Wickramasinghe Museum.
  2. Gourmet Galle, 13 January - 30 March ‘24, Galle, @gourmetgalle &
    From January through March Gorumet Galle will curate exclusive dinners and masterclasses in exotic locations on Sri Lanka’s South Coast. Inspired by locally sourced ingredients, it is a celebration of Sri Lanka food and tourism. Star chefs from London, New York, Sydney, Singapore include: Darina Allen, O Tama Carey, Karan Gokani, Mark Hix, Peter Kuruwita, Jeremy Lee, James Lowe, Rishi Neleendra, Hari Nayak, Nisha Parmar, J Ryall, Cynthia Shanmugalingam, Mandy Yin.
  3. Opera at the Anantara, 19 - 21 January ‘24, Tangalle, @anantaratangalle
    Nestled amid the resplendent beauty of pristine beaches at Anantara Peace Haven, the forthcoming art and music weekend promises to curate an indelible ambience of refined creativity and immersive experiences. This elevated occasion is poised to serve as a distinguished platform, harmonizing the expressions of local artists such as the Gustav Mahler orchestra and Chrisni Mendis, and international musicians such as Jorge Echeagaray, Barbara Segal, and Carlos Conde-González showcasing their artistry and virtuosity.
  4. Southern Book Fair, 19 - 28 January ‘24, Galle,
    The inaugural Southern Book Fair marks a vibrant celebration of literature, expressing Sri Lanka’s cultural diversity, nurturing the spirit of creativity and collaboration, and promoting innovation and accessibility. Located in the heart of iconic Galle, the Southern Book Fair will offer a platform for publishers, editors, aspiring authors, and avid readers to develop new partnerships, fostering opportunities to celebrate our own rich, literary heritage, and introducing contemporary works from diverse voices around the world.
  5. Galle Literary Festival, 25 - 28 January ‘24, Galle, @gallelitfest &
    This January the centuries-old UNESCO World Heritage Site, Galle Fort will once again come alive with the buzz of literary chatter. Since its launch in 2007, the Galle Literary Festival has become one of South Asia's most anticipated arts and culture events. A favourite among authors and attendees alike, the Festival hosts a wide variety of talks, workshops and exhibitions in an intimate, historic setting. 2024’s high profile line up, will see the likes of Booker Prize-winning authors, Shehan Karunatilake and DBC Pierre; decorated war correspondent, Christina Lamb, and novelists Alexander McCall Smith and Anthony Horowitz, alongside 65 participants, championing the work of writers and poets, as well as giving space to painters, photographers and cinematographers. Through associated culinary events, the Festival also highlights the excellence of local and international chefs.
  6. Matara Festival for the Arts (MFA), 1 - 4 February ‘24, Matara, @MataraForArts
    Matara Festival for the Arts is a coastal celebration of contemporary art & music from Sri Lanka and beyond, curated by leading contemporary artist Prof. Jagath Weerasinghe & music educator Dr. Sumudi Suraweera. The Matara Fort, the University of Ruhuna, and the Matara River Park will host exhibitions, workshops & talks, a community market, and a film screening by leading artists, notable speakers in arts and culture, and over 30 local vendors & artisans. Evening parties & events extend from Hiriketiya, Madiha, to Mirissa. Its Independence Day concert will feature 7 performers/bands - Amila Sanduruwan, Baliphonics, Orange Mango, Paloma, SDP ft. Paula, Rolex Rasathy, and The Soul. The MFA's programming partners include National Trust Sri Lanka, the George Keyt Foundation, and the Good Market.

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