Joy was a very hard working lady who never took no for an answer. Her support team always worked hard to achieve the best results. Even though tough as she was she had a heart of gold
A legendary teacher of music and the arts Mrs. Joy Ferdinando was called to her maker last month (June 27) after a brief illness.
She had a record 68 years of teaching music and started from small beginnings.
Joy came from a family where its members had music in their blood. She was from Moratuwa. Her two sisters were also music teachers, but it was Joy who strode forward to start her own Institute-International Institute of Music, Speech and Drama 20 years ago.
There was no turning back and soon she had experienced examiners and teachers from across the country- including the North and East- backing her. Her students sat for local and foreign exams.
Joy was the Sri Lanka representative of IILCM-London College of Music Examinations-University of West London and was later made a fellow of the Society of Teachers of speech and Drama -UK.
She was responsible in starting in Sri Lanka the ever popular Festivals for Music, Speech- and Drama which provided an opportunity to students of all ages to display their talents.
Her contacts and relationship in London paid off. Annually she had foreign adjudicators coming to judge the festivals. Every year the standards grew by leaps and bounds.This made her very happy and content.
Joy was a very hard working lady who never took no for an answer. Her support team always worked hard to achieve the best results. Even though tough as she was she had a heart of gold. She was there at hand to help her staff and friends whenever a request was made. On numerous occasions she permitted students to sit for exams and take part in festivals even though they had not paid their fees. She often said I cannot deprive these children in showcasing their talents.
Every year Joy took her Institute staff on an overseas holiday to show her appreciation for a job done well. Joy was their second mother and mentor.
Joy loved overseas travel and had a small group of friends who did many a trip with her. She often visited the United Kingdom to keep abreast with work of London School of Music. The vast multitude of tributes paid to her after her demise is evident of her value; something we are going to miss. Examinere, teachers, parents and children came in their numbers to pay their last respects to her; at her daughters residence.
The mission she started via her Institute I am sure will be carried forward by her staff and management for the benefit of the younger generation.
My family and I had known Joy for more than 28 years and we were privileged to know such a charming lady.
Aunty Joy-you are now in a better place and May your Soul Rest in Peace.
Johanne De Zilwa.