” Never give up until youachieve yourd reams “
Whirlwind doesn’t even begin to describe Falan Andrea Jansen’s life these past few months. After dazzling judges and the nation, with her smoky raspy vocals and unique song choices, the up-and-coming starlet was crowned winner of Sri Lanka’s popular live musical performance show Derana Dream Star’s ninth season.
If there is one thing that’s been certain since her debut in the local entertainment industry, it’s that Falan has clearly been busy in recent weeks. From the Derana Dream Star win to multiple media appearances and other endorsements, she keeps moving forward, chasing the dream of earning her rightful place in the world of entertainment.
When asked if she’s discovered anything new about herself after winning the title, Falan says: “I did not realise that I was this much of a performer before the contest until I got the chance to perform in front of a crowd. And I also learned how to be around and in front of cameras.”
Decked out in distressed jeans and a plain white T-shirt, Falan is as cool and fun as she appears in her pictures.
Meeting Falan was a breath of fresh air: it was a pleasure to sit down with someone who is new to the spotlight; and her sparkling nature and fresh perspective on the local entertainment industry in general, as well as the musical competition, was an eye-opener.
As a nation, we need to encourage and support the new generations that are dipping their toes in these unchartered waters – talent and what they can bring to this growing industry are on show, after all.
Ashwini Vethakan chats with the rising young starlet as she lets us in on her life’s journey, passions and plans for the future.
Q: How would you like to describe yourself to our readers?
A: I’d say that I’m a fun loving person who looks at life positively, and loves to experiment with and experience new things.
Q: Besides art and music, what other passions do you have?
A: I’m extremely curious about untangling unsolved crimes and mysteries. If I hadn’t become a singer, I’d probably be a criminal investigator or someone equally suave and perhaps intriguing. I am also passionate about compèring and presenting.
Q: How would you describe your childhood and teenage years?
A: I was a shy child when I was growing up; but as I entered my teenage years, I found myself gradually coming out of my shell. Singing has been a part of my life ever since I was a kid but until my teens, only my family and close friends knew that I could sing.
Q: Your most memorable moment in life so far is…
A: Winning the title of Derana Dream Star Season 9 was definitely a dream come true and a moment I will cherish my whole life.
Q: Who has been your inspiration from day one?
A: My parents. I have never seen two people who are stronger and more committed as my mother and father. They constantly inspire me to be the best version of myself. I wouldn’t have come this far if it wasn’t for them.
Q: Would you call yourself ‘a romantic’? And what’s the most romantic thing you’ve done and someone has done for you?
A: Well, if I’m being honest, this is something I’m still trying to figure out.
Q: And what’s your happy place?
A: My bedroom. It’s where I find peace after hectic days and long hours of work.
” If I hadn’t become a singer, I’d probably be a criminal investigator or someone equally suave and perhaps intriguing “
Live or recorded
Solo or duet
Miked or unplugged
Piano or guitar
Lounge bar or stage
Jazz or blues
Classical or pop
A bit of both
Facebook or Instagram
Book or magazine
Film or TV
Comedy or romance
Dressed up or casual
Dress or pants
Earrings or bracelets
Eyeliner or lipstick
Plane or train
Sunset or sunrise
Q: Did you discover anything new about yourself during the contest?
A: Yes, I certainly did. I didn’t realise that I was this much of a performer before the contest until I got the chance to perform in front of a crowd. I also learned how to be around and in front of cameras.
Q: Which of the judges left you with the most memorable critique – and why?
A: I once got the lyrics to the famous song Maga Thotadi by Milton Mallawarachchi wrong and one of the judges (Keerthi Pasquel) corrected me, and asked me to apologise publicly on stage. It was a great learning experience for me.
Q: Your first memory of music…
A: Singing in front of my family and other relations at gatherings of our relatives.
Q: What’s the one thing you wish for to take your career forward?
A: The opportunity to perform on an international stage someday.
Q: If you could front line for any band in the world, which would it be?
A: Pentatonix – because they are pure gold!
Q: Have you ever attempted being a lyricist? And from where would you draw your inspiration?
A: I haven’t tried writing so I still do not know whether I have that gift. But personally, I think that life experiences are what inspire people to write.
Q: Pick one facet of the local entertainment industry that you would like to improve and tell us how you would accomplish it…
A: The local entertainment industry has come a long way and is much better than what it was. However, I think senior artistes should encourage their up-and-coming juniors to improve and advance, and be recognised in this industry.
” I did not realise that I was this much of a performer before the contest until I got the chance to perform in front of a crowd “
Sisters (Natasha and Jennifer)
Holy Family Convent (Bambalapitiya)
National Institute of Business Management (NIBM)
To be a lead singer or performing artiste
ALWAYS WANTED TO BE
“All progress takes place outside the comfort zone.” (Michael John Bobak)
Her mother – “Because she is the strongest woman I have ever known.”
Q: What’s your definition of success?
A: Being happy and content in what you do with no regrets.
Q: Your fantasy date night would be…
A: A very comfy movie night in pj’s at home.
Q: What’s your ideal holiday destination – and why?
A: Definitely Hawaii because of its beautiful beaches.
Q: If you could perform on stage with any local or international celebrity, who would you pick and why?
A: Jessie J – because she is such an underrated but extremely talented artiste and I love her personality.
Q: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?
A: My need to overthink the little things.
Q: What advice would you offer to the future talent of Sri Lanka?
A: Never give up until you achieve your dreams because everyone’s timing is different… and when it’s your turn, you will be glad that you put yourself and your goals first.
Q: Given the times we live in, what does the future hold for the entertainment industry in particular and Sri Lanka in general?
A: These are definitely hard times for all of us in the entertainment industry. But this period was a real eye-opener; it has allowed us to be creative and find alternative ways to entertain our devoted fans. Hopefully, things will get back to normal sooner rather than later.
Q: And what’s next for Falan?
A: Currently, I am working on more than eight original songs! Besides that, I’m also involved in a few interesting projects and brands. Hopefully, everyone will get to see my new work really soon.
I definitely took my time with my original pieces because I want to deliver something extraordinary to those who have been supporting me throughout this journey.
In the Shadow
of the Moon
SONGS FROM A POPULAR MOVIE/ ANIMATION
I’ll Never Love Again
Start a Fire
SONGS TO BRING AN AUDIENCE TO ITS FEET
Summer of ’69
Livin’ la Vida Loca