Christmas in Maha Nuge Gardens was a very special time. There were so many visitors to Vernon Corea’s residence – 5 Maha Nuge Gardens in Kollupitiya, Colombo -3, from friends and relatives to Radio Ceylon colleagues to choirs who came carol singing…….Vernon rejoiced in the birth of Jesus Christ, a Saviour to Mankind.
Vernon would change the face of his front lounge – he was also a gifted artist and he would transform the back wall with a massive mural, over the years, Joseph, Mary and the baby Jesus, the Three Wise Men, Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer and Santa Claus have all taken centre stage at 5 Maha Nuge Gardens with a massive Christmas tree cut from the front garden.
Vernon enjoyed Christmas and he recorded so many Christmas radio programmes and they were broadcast over the airwaves of Radio Ceylon and the Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation from 1956 to his last Christmas in Sri Lanka in 1974.The family attended the Christmas morning service at St.Luke’s Church, Borella. In the 1960s Vernon’s father Reverend Canon Ivan Corea and brother Ernest Corea also used to attend Christmas Services at the Church followed by a massive family get together.
The great artistes have all sung their Christmas songs on Vernon Corea’s radio programmes across South Asia – from Bing Crosby, Jim Reeves, Elvis Presley, Nat King Cole, Cliff Richard to Andy Williams and the Osmond Brothers to Boney M. They were favourities on the SLBC. Vernon has also compered countless Christmas and New Year Dances over the airwaves of Radio Ceylon.
Here are some of the Christmas hits on Vernon Corea’s radio programmes to mark the birth of Jesus Christ.