Desmond de Silva
Desmond de Silva, born in Matara, is one of Sri Lanka's greatest entertainers, he is known as the 'King of Baila.' Desmond de Silva launched his career in popular music in Colombo in 1963 when he fronted a group called 'Desmond and the Fireflies.' He has also played with top groups Spitfires, Mignonne Fernando and The Jetliners. De Silva is an international star and has performed all over the world. He has sold millions of 'baila' CDs.
Desmond de Silva has championed the cause of Autism in Sri Lanka. He created history by being the first Sri Lankan musician to appeal on autism at a music concert on 6th August 2005.
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- Autism is a neuro-developmental disorder affecting so many around the world. Autism is not mental illness, these children and adults think differently. Albert Einstein they say was autistic. How many in the audience know that there are 38,000 autistic people in Sri Lanka? So we as entertainers, urge you all to ‘speak up for those who cannot speak up for themselves.’ Lets spread awareness of autism, particularly when numbers of autistic children are rising and we urge our government to also provide public services – who knows we may even produce Albert Einsteins if we provide education, health, specialist speech therapy for autistic children in our lovely island....
- Clickpress release (9 August 2009).