Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts

With the early release last week of six shows for the Norfolk & Norwich Festival and a packed calendar of Britten Centenary Concerts and high profile exhibitions in iconic buildings around Norwich, the city is a hot destination for art lovers in 2013.

The Norfolk & Norwich Festival (10 – 26 May ), the second largest international arts festival in England, is a hugely anticipated celebration of the arts, which turns Norwich into an exciting, rich and colourful cultural playground where audiences can expect the unexpected and be treated to breathtaking shows and music from around the world.

Hot off the press this week is the announcement of visiting authors to Norwich for the annual and renowned UEA Spring Literary Festival.  This year includes one of the world’s leading thriller writers – Lee Child, Costa Poetry Award shortlisted author Kathleen Jamie and Posy Simmonds the creator of some of our best-loved and most astutely observed comic strips and illustrated stories for both adults and children.

Benjamin Britten has strong links with Norwich and 2013 will see a host of concerts and recitals across the city in historic buildings to celebrate his centenary. Recent event announcements include a special centenary weekend in June at Norwich Cathedral and a 4-week celebration of Britten at Norwich’s stunning millennium building, The Forum in November. Overall across Norfolk and Suffolk there will be in excess of 130 events, featuring 209 performances of 97 different works by Britten plus events and concerts across the world.

Exhibitions to watch out for include Magic World at Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery. Magic World delves into the worlds of fantasy, illusion and enchantment with a spellbinding exhibition exploring how magic has been embraced for hundreds of years. Displayed in three major sections – Illusion, Fantasy and Enchantment – this colourful exhibition will explore the origins and history of magic and show how magical themes have influenced artists and writers in creating fantasy realms over the centuries.

At the stunning Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts from 14 September visitors will experience the newly refurbished galleries with a major exhibition displaying the best art of Norfolk and Suffolk throughout history. Art and East Anglia will celebrate the rich and unique artistic heritage of the region, with works from across the visual arts – paintings, sculptures, architecture, ceramics, glass, jewellery, photography, textiles and design – from the prehistoric period to the present day. Drawn from major collections, the exhibition will showcase the array of masterworks the region has inspired, produced and collected, as well as treasures that have been long associated with the area, and demonstrate its importance in a national and international context.

Nick Bond, Head of Tourism at VisitNorwich said, “Norwich has an immense programme of special cultural activity.  People in Norwich are particularly inspired and creative when it comes to the arts and the city benefits from a wide range of offerings for all ages, free and paid for.

2013 brings some very extraordinary events many of which will feature during the Norfolk & Norwich Festival. But aside from that, music will be a particular highlight throughout the year due to the celebrations of Benjamin Britten.  Norwich is also a newly appointed UNESCO City of Literature so there will be many literary events and propositions presented in the months to come.

The people of Norwich are extremely lucky to have all this entertainment on their doorstep, but our visitors to the city are particularly honoured. We hope that the message of the quality and breadth of diverse culture in Norwich starts to spread so that Norwich sees an increase in visitors who are looking for that extra something special.”

For further information on Norwich and its surrounding area visit

For information regarding the Benjamin Britten Centenary visit


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