Sri Lankan band Marians. From left to right: Dhanesh Perera, Subash Chintaka, Andrew Fernando, Dileepa Kumar, Nalin Perera, Joseph Milton, Nalin Silva, Ajith Fernando, Jayantha Upali. Image Credit: Marians

Dubai’s going to get some Sinhalese vibes this weekend on May 15. One of Sri Lanka’s best-known and longest-surviving bands, Marians, are coming to Dubai. Formed in 1988, this nine-member band have released eight studio albums and are still actively touring around the world.

Although they’ve performed at private gigs in the UAE, the band’s return will mark their first public performance, and it’s going to be all acoustic, with songs in Sinhala, Hindi and English. Soundbites caught up with lead singer Nalin Perera to discuss music, longevity and One Direction.

For people who’ve never heard of you, please describe your music.

Our music consists of varied styles. It ranges from classical to western. Our songs come in mainly the languages of Sinhala, Hindi and English. We always love to experiment and provide a unique experience to our fan base.

So that means you’re a fan of One Direction?

I can’t say I’m really a fan of One Direction. I’ve listened to their music and I really appreciate their work and would say they are an extremely talented set of boys.

You have eight albums behind you. What’s the secret to your longevity?

[It is] purely our dedication and hard work towards maintaining our standards of music and towards keeping up with new and rising trends of the industry. Marians is known to always give its audience a unique musical experience, which helps us maintain our fan base as well the attraction of new fans over time.

Isn’t it hard to keep a band with so many members together?

It definitely takes a lot of hard work since we are all different personalities. However, communication and hearing each other out helps each of us to work together with better understanding and with unity.

Outside of Sri Lanka, where would you say is your biggest fan base?

I would say our biggest fan base is in UAE as there are lots of Sri Lankans residing there and most of them are lovers of our music. It’s always a pleasure to perform there and the love we receive from our fans is indescribable.

What can fans expect from the unplugged concert in Dubai?

Our fans can expect an enjoyable evening of soothing and healing music done with a combination of English and Hindi songs. We hope to do our very best for our fans and I would say a night full entertainment can be guaranteed this coming weekend.

What next for the Marians?

In the future, we are hoping to release a new album and we’re currently in the process of creating new songs. Also we have plans of releasing new music videos in the near future.

Don’t miss it!

Marians bring their Accoustica concert at the Shaikh Rashid Auditorium, Indian High School, Dubai, on May 15. Doors open at 6pm. Tickets, starting at Dh100, are available on