Performing at DanceEast in April 2016, Nora is the coming together of dancers Eleanor Sikorski and Flora Wellesley Wesley. Their desire to dance together, their love of choreographic structures and their critical eye has given them the impetus to invite several distinguished dance makers to create work especially for them. In this, their first collaborative endeavour, they performed an evening of new works by the indomitable Liz Aggiss, acclaimed duo Jonathan Burrows and Matteo Fargion, and renowned French choreographer Simon Tanguy.
Set within the magnificent, newly-revealed vaulted undercroft of the 15th century Trinity Guildhall, Stories of Lynn invites visitors to come in to discover the stories behind the notable characters that helped shape King’s Lynn.
Medieval Lynn was a port of international importance and one of the largest port towns in England. Its status can be clearly seen in the rich legacy of historic buildings and beautiful architecture visible all around the town, and in its amazing collections of artefacts and its comprehensive borough archive.
Using information from the archives and collections, the stories of the seafarers, merchants, mayors, magistrates and miscreants over 800 years of the town’s history are told through an exciting, interactive, multi-media experience.
The revitalised town hall complex will act as a gateway to the town’s other heritage sites including the Red Mount Chapel, neighbouring King’s Lynn Minster, Greyfriars Tower, True’s Yard, St. Nicholas’ Chapel and Lynn Museum.
Every year since 2013, the Suffolk Coast has played host to Felixstowe Book Festival.
Driving home after an exciting weekend at Cambridge Word Fest, Felixstowe resident Meg Reid thought “Why can’t Felixstowe have its own book festival? Why should other towns have all the fun?” Meg spoke with fellow book lovers in the town and realised that there was enough interest in literature to support a book festival.
With the generous support of local funders, friends, family and volunteers, Meg got the book festival off the ground, and the first festival took place in June 2013. Now going into its fourth year, Felixstowe Book Festival has become one of the highlights of the East Anglian Arts Calendar.
2016’s festival took place across 25-26 June, and was the biggest yet, with opening night entertainment from FlipSide, Book Trails across the town and readings from celebrated authors and poets, including award-winning Hollie McNish.
For today’s Culture365 item, we’re not in the East. Instead, we find ourselves in California for Benjamin Johncock’s The Last Pilot, another masterpiece shaped by the inspirational East.
Set against the backdrop of one of the most emotionally charged periods in American history, The Last Pilot begins in the bone-dry Mojave Desert during the late 1940s, where US Air Force test pilots are racing to break the sound barrier. Among the exalted few is Jim Harrison: dedicated to his wife, Grace, and their baby daughter.
By the 1960s, the space race is underway and Harrison and his colleagues are offered a place in history as the world’s first astronauts. But when his young family is thrown into crisis, Jim is faced with a decision that will affect the course of the rest of his life – whether to accept his ticket to the moon and at what cost.
While not set in the East, this region helped shape the novel. Author Benjamin Johncock wrote the majority of the novel in the seaside town of Southwold, Suffolk, before relocating to Norwich and finishing the novel at the Millennium Library with support from Writers’ Centre Norwich.
Pick up a copy of The Last Pilot in one of the region’s fantastic independent booksellers. The Book Hive is one of our favourites!
Feel like being inspired yourself? Have an adventure in Norwich and start writing that novel. Visit Norwich is the best place to go to plan your trip.
WW2 saw thousands of American servicemen arrive in East Anglia, using the region as a base for their sorties across the continent.
There are several places across Norfolk and Suffolk where you can find tributes to these brave men, such as the 100th Bomb Group Memorial Museum, in Thorpe Abbots near Norwich. The museum is a moving testament to the Americans who were stationed in Thorpe Abbot during the war. It consists of the control tower, the engine shed and several other original buildings, plus thousands of exhibits.
To plan your visit to this fascinating and atmospheric site, visit the museum’s website.
In the second post about Aldeburgh Music’s fantastic Easter programme, we’re looking at Fauré’s Requiem at Orford Church.
The Requiems of Fauré and Duruflé share a common thread: there is the beauty and poignancy of commemoration and remembrance with little of the cataclysmic savagery of the Day of Judgement. Fauré weaves a chamberlike intimacy into this most gentle of Requiems, beautifully captured in the composer’s own reduction for organ and solo violin. The emotional impact of Duruflé’s work comes in cumulative waves and sumptuous post-Wagnerian harmony.
In the first of two posts about very special events taking place across Aldeburgh Music’s Easter programme, we’re taking a look at today’s Sacred and Profane, which is at Blythburgh Church (pictured here).
Audiences will be treated to a trio of choral pieces in the beautiful Blythburgh Church, starting with Britten’s Sacred and Profane.
The evening ends with Lennox Berkeley’s stark and affecting Stabat Mater – the setting of the medieval poem reflecting on the suffering of Christ’s mother by the Cross – was commissioned by (and dedicated to) Britten, who conducted its UK premiere in this church nearly 70 years ago.
It’s partnered with Berkeley’s a cappella Mass, Britten’s own settings of medieval poetry, the quicksilver exuberance of his youthful Sinfonietta, and an exquisite meditation on Monteverdi and Purcell by Lennox’s son, Michael.
23rd March 2016 saw the Northern Ballet’s Tortoise & the Hare come to DanceEast!
Following sell-out tours of Ugly Duckling, Three Little Pigs and Elves & The Shoemaker and TV adaptations for CBeebies, Northern Ballet brought their magic to Tortoise & the Hare.
Once upon a time there was a speedy Hare who never stopped talking about how fast he could run. Tired of being teased for his slowness, Tortoise challenged him to a race. No one thought he could win, but life is full of surprises!
Bringing this much-loved Aesop’s fable to life, Tortoise & the Hare was the perfect opportunity for little ones to enjoy live ballet, music and theatre.
Year-round, DanceEast hosts performances which cater for all ages. Book tickets at DanceEast.
There’s no need to rush! Why not stay in Ipswich overnight? All About Ipswich is the best place to find out what else is going on in the town.
As explored in a previous Culture365 item, flint has played a significant part in the East’s history, and now, a new exhibition explores the role it has played in more detail. Flint Rocks! is at Ancient House Museum until October, and examines flint throughout the region.
From fossils to flakes and soldiers to strikea-lights, this exhibition throws light on this very versatile stone. Discover the people who worked and used it, and find out about flint’s Japanese
And has there ever been a better time to visit? Ancient House was recently named the winner of the EDP ‘Visit Norfolk Tourism Awards’ Best Visitor Attraction.
In March 2016, visitors to Time and Tide Museum were able to explore a brand new exhibition – Halfway to Paradise. Halfway to Paradise re-lived the excitement and energy of the early years of rock and roll through the exceptional photography of Harry Hammond, the music photographer who documented the emergence of Rock ‘n’ Roll music in post-war Britain. His era-defining images of popular music icons such as Roy Orbison, Ella Fitzgerald, Cliff Richard and Shirley Bassey went on show alongside rare memorabilia exploring Great Yarmouth’s thriving music scene of the early 1960s, including posters, programmes and star autographs.
The display was drawn from the V&A’s collection and provided an insight into the change in musical tastes over the two decades following the war. Hammond’s photographs chronicled the jazz and big band musicians of the early 1950s such as Frank Sinatra and Billie Holiday, American Rock ‘n’ Roll stars visiting Britain including Little Richard, Eddie Cochran and Gene Vincent, through to the early breakthroughs of British rock such as the Animals and the Beatles in the 1960s.
The exhibition also explored the fascinating local dimension to this story, documenting Great Yarmouth’s place in the Rock ‘n’ Roll revolution when home-grown talent played alongside top stars of the day at the town’s key venues such as the ABC and Windmill Theatres.
Halfway to Paradise was a nostalgic treat for the ear and eye – and a wonderful opportunity to revisit one of the most exciting eras in popular music. See what’s on at the moment at Time and Tide.
Explore Great Yarmouth, as well as the rest of the region (Norwich is great for live music too!) with Visit Norfolk.