Marina Theatre, Lowestoft

The annual programme of Heritage Open Days events gets underway across the country this week, and we’ve picked out a few of the arts-related highlights across East Anglia.

The scheme sees many buildings not normally open to the public throw open their doors, and a chance to see behind the scenes at some otherwise familiar locations.

Norfolk highlights include a chance to drop in on rehearsals for Voters Not Bloaters – a new musical production exploring of the women’s suffrage movement in Great Yarmouth – at St George’s Theatre, as well as a chance to look around the Grade I listed former chapel building.

There is also the chance to look around the nearby Drill House venue, operated by Seachange Arts, as part of the Out There Festival, and the guided tours of the Pavilion Theatre in Gorleston.

In King’s Lynn there are chances to explore the art deco Majestic Cinema and the opportunity to go backstage, rig the lights, and do a soundcheck at at the Corn Exchange.

Those who couldn’t make the Theatre Royal Norwich‘s annual open day can book in for a guided backstage tour as part of the Heritage Open Day scheme, and there are drop in events at the Maddermarket Theatre and Norwich Arts Centre including the first chance to see the newly-revealed 15th century roof following a £500,000 renovation.

There is the rare chance to see inside St Simon and St Jude Church on Elm Hill, now home to the Curious Directive theatre company, while at St Martins At Palace Plain there will be a series of Shakespearean monologues performed by Ye Palace Plaiers.

In Suffolk, the Marina Theatre in Lowestoft will be offering historic tours, technical workshops, and surprise events, while the town’s former Poundstretcher store is being taken over with the Easterly Artists Pop-up Gallery showcasing work by artists based within 20-miles of Ness Point.

There is more art on show – as well as areas of the building not normally open to the public, including a flint walls and ceiling beams made out of ships beams – at the Lowestoft Arts Centre, and the town’s Port House will host an exhibition of more than 140 rare historic photographs of Lowestoft including many never previously exhibited.

In Cambridgeshire, there are chances to go behind the scenes at the ADC Theatre and the Storey’s Field Centre in Cambridge, and the Key Theatre in Peterborough is also holding guided tours.