Opera was a new experience for students from Velvettithurai visiting Colombo on an exchange programme arranged by the Rotary Club of Colombo Mid-Town. In addition to the usual visits, including Parliament, as well as interactions with the business community, they were invited to the Mt Lavinia Hotel to view artists from the Teatro alla Scala Academy of Lyric Opera in Milan.
The event had been organized by the Italian Embassy in collaboration with several sponsors, and the ambassador kindly offered 10 tickets, worth Rs 3000 each, to the Reconciliation office for the students who would be visiting. They were accompanied by Prof Rajendran who had helped to arrange the visit.
Before the concert the students were greeted by the Italian ambassador Fabrizio Pia Arpea, and his Deputy, Dr Luca Rubagotti, as well as the Russian ambassador. The picture shows the students with their host and the Head of UNICEF, along with Pushpi Weerakoon, who coordinated the visit.