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Biography of: Dr K N Lakmal Peiris, MD, PhD

Dr. Lakmal Peiris was born the same day as Beethoven, but 189 years later, in Colombo, Sri Lanka. His family shows a tradition with generations of Engineers, Inventors and Painters. It’s a curious coincidence that his grandfather on father’s side, Manuel Joseph Peiris, was Kapellmeister at the Cathedral of Negambo, Sri Lanka, the same as it was Beethoven’s grandfather for the Archbishop of Cologne.

Unfortunately, ageing nine being the eldest of his brothers, he had to face the death of his father, to whom he promised to take care of the family. As he was 17, one of his inventions, a mechanical model of the Sun, Earth and Moon was awarded with the Prize at a Science Exhibition in Sri Lanka, granting him, amongst other merits, a Scholarship for highest studies in Cuba, which he used for studying Human Medicine.

During his third Medical Study year, he was initiated in Music, Harmony and Classical Guitar by Luis Meneses Columbié, who on the other hand was his Surgery disciple at the Ancillary Student’s Group << Dr. Mario Muñoz >> for early surgical practice. Today, Luis Meneses Columbié is the head of the General Surgery Division of the County’s Hospital at El Salvador, Northern Chile. Since then, Lakmal is quite autodidact, appearing at several Music Festivals in Cuba as Guitar Soloist, forming a Classical Guitar Duo with Dr. Meneses, and as the leader of the Guitar Group at the Instituto Superior de Ciencias Médicas de Villa Clara (I.S.C.M. – V.C.) (=College For Medical Sciences of Villa Clara).

He gave his first concert as a Guitar Soloist at the Provincial Museum of Villa Clara on June 10, 1987, during his sixth Medical Study year. Then came other concerts in Spain, England, Sweden, Germany, Portugal, Canada, Netherlands, Brazil, Egypt, Seychelles, Colombia and Sri Lanka, being awarded with several prizes. He got tutorial training and critical advice from Masters like Leo Brouwer, José Luis Martínez, David Russell, Flores Chaviano, Luis Quiñones and Hugo Geller.

With his first CD record, << Vivencias >>, Lakmal became the first Sri-Lankan recording a disc in Classical Guitar, and is world-wide the first practicing Doctor recording a technically highly complex Concert Tremolo as << Una limosnita por el amor de Dios >> from the Guaraní genius Agustín Barrios Mangoré. His public appearances and in particular his one man concerts number in their hundreds, each of them reached out to an audience who have being touched in no mean measure. Among those held at Teatro Abel Santa María (Santa Clara), Teatro Principal (Camaguëy), Teatro Central de Trabajadores (Havana), Salón Varietes Theatre (Fuengirola) Ms Vistamar (Alexandría), Teatro Sauto y Atenas (Matanzas), Auditorio Eduardo Caballero Calderón (Tunja), Teatro Fundación Universidad Católica (Manizales), Fundación Quindiana (Bogotá), Missionary Institute (Londres), Bandaranayeke Memorial International Conference Hall (Colombo), Palacio de Congresos (Marbella), Festival Palace (Edmonton), Teatro Ilustre Colegio Oficial de Médicos (Málaga), FN Dagan (Gävle), Ms Vistamar (Mahé), Café Teatro “Santiago Alquimista” (Lisbon), Fundación Don Juan de Borbón (Segovia) should be mentioned.

In parallel with his careers as Doctor and Musician, Lakmal did specialize in the Methodology of Scientific Research and Biostatistics. So far, he has written 18 Scientific Papers in several Medical Disciplines as Biochemistry, Immunology, Psychiatry, Cardiology and several Surgery, with several awards and publications, as: Provincial Prize 1983 in Biochemistry and Immunology for << Study on reduce Glutation in Adult, New-born and Diabetic Patients >>, Provincial Prize 1986 in General Surgery for << Emergency Surgical Treatment in Upper Digestive Bleeding >> (Casuistic of 448 cases), Provincial Prize 1986 in Cardiology and National Prize in Cardiology 1986 for << Value of the Isoenzymatic Pattern of the Lactic Dehydrogenize in the Diagnosis of the Acute Myocardial Infarction >>.

In the History Hall of the I.S.C.M.-V.C., under the title as << Best Absolvent of all Times >> are still Lakmal’s name, photograph and achievements, including a Honor Roll with Golden Title (Doctor of Medicine), with the quite an unreachable Career Academic Average Record of 99.6 points out of possible 100. Best surgery tutor, Most Excellent in Cultural activities, Member of the Athletic Team (long distance and orientation races) during five years, etc.

The International Biographical Centre, located in Cambridge, England, named him an << International Intellectual of the Year 2001 >>, in recognition of his contributions to humanities, and Lakmal shares the dedication section with personalities such as Mohandas Gandhi, Stephen Hawking, Nelson Mandela, Albert Einstein, Mother Theresa in the recent biographical reference “Great Minds of the XXI Century” published by the American Biographical Institute. (North Carolina).

Observing little trains and tractors he made out of wood at the age of nine, his maternal grandfather, John Alosious Martino, rewarded Dr. Peiris with his own carpentry tools. Since then, Dr. Peiris has developed skills in woodworking, designing and making several items of furniture. He has exhibited noteworthy woodcarvings in various exhibitions, such as those held in January 2006 at the National Art Gallery Colombo (“Art Work by Four Generations of an Artistic Family”), in August 2006 at the Missionary Institute London (“Art Work of Three Generations”), in February 2007 at the Pinacoteca of “El Ilustre Colegio Oficial de Medicos de Malaga (“Obras de Tres Generaciones”). In July 2008, with the guidance from Master Luthier Joaquin Garcia, Dr. Peiris has concluded the construction of a classical guitar for his performances and recordings unique with carvings of elephants.

Lakmal is a true lover of Nature. 1976 he won awards for Botany and Zoology at his Saint-Sebastian-College in Moratuwa. His first employment was as a teacher for Botany at his << alma mater >>, knowledge he enhances at the University of Peranediya, but left it later, in order to study Medicine. But he didn’t leave Botany at all; now he is an expert in Epiphytes and maintains a significant collection of Exotic Orchids and gives international conferences on Orchid Growing. Recently, Dr. Peiris was appointed as an advisor on orchid growing to the Provincial Botanical Garden (Jardin Botanico La Concepcion) in Malaga where he is designing and mounting their Orchidarium.

<<< "... is an unremitting Student, Doctor, Investigator, Inventor, Botanist, Record Producer, Wood Carver and quite a Linguist..." >>>

Lakmal, who sees himself as a Citizen of the World, is an unremitting Student, Doctor, Investigator, Inventor, Botanist, Record Producer and quite a Linguist; a kind of << Leonardo da Vinci to be >>.