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Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Nelum Pokuna: Colombo National Performing Arts Theater, Srilanka

Colombo National performing arts theater was an attractive building in Colombo which we spotted from a distance as we were driving towards Independence Memorial. Our driver told this building is not open to public, but I had to check it out. From the Virahamadevi park, I walked across the road and asked security if I can take a walk inside-he permitted and we were in. This building, formerly known as National Performing Arts theater and now known as Nelum Pokuna (Lotus Pond, its shape) Mahinda Rajapaksa Theater was not existing when I had last visited Srilanka in 2011. This place opened to public in Dec 2011. Its creative architecture grabs attention from distance and is worth a few moments of admiration.

We took a walk outside and went towards the entrance. We weren't sure if we are allowed to go inside, but a few people there said we can access public areas. We took elevator and went to Level 5.

On Level 5 there is an open amphitheater, which can seat about 250-300 people. But we can’t get much views of the city from there as the edge is far from centre.


Remaining levels have seating of various categories to view the live performance. We couldn't go inside.

Huge glass panel exterior gives this building a distinction and makes it visible from considerable distance.



Exterior glass panel layer adds beauty to what otherwise would have been another regular building. Greenery is introduced wherever possible. Feels like a glass house.

The Colombo Municipal Council (dubbed as WhiteHouse),  Virahamadevi park, Colombo National Museum and Central library are all within walking distance from Nelum Pokuna performing arts theater.

Inside views