SUN 11 – FRI 23 JUNE

Once Upon A Festival is our annual Childrens Arts Festival in Theatres, Schools and Communities

Once upon a time… there was an idea to create an arts festival which spanned the region and engaged children within schools, venues and many other unique spaces. The idea was to ensure all children have access to the best theatre and arts out there. After lots of hard work, funding applications and collaborative efforts from organisations in Chatteris, Lowestoft, Norwich, Southwold and Thetford as well as artists from across the UK — Once upon a Festival 2017 was born! This is the third year of the Festival and it’s going to be bigger, better and more magical than ever!






11 June Free Family Activity Day – The Carnival of Characters Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds
12 – 13 June

The Tiger Who Came to Tea

Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds
14 – 15 June The Tiger Who Came to Tea Marina Theatre, Lowestoft
15 June The Doodle Dance Show Thetford Meet Up
16 June Lighthouse Keeper’s Lunch Southwold Arts Centre
16 – 17 June The Elves & The Shoemaker Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds
18 June Peter Pan – Screening NT Live Marina Theatre, Lowestoft
19 – 20 June Alice in Wonderland Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds
20 June Orla’s Moon Musical for 0-3 years Southwold Arts Centre
21 June There and Back Again – An Odyssey Marina Theatre, Lowestoft
22 June Fairytales Gone Bad Chatteris in Myth & Memory Celebration Day
23 June A Real Alien Adventure The Garage, Norwich
23 June The Junk Orchestra Thetford Meet Up


Carnival of Characters | The Tiger Who Came To Tea | The Elves & The Shoemaker | Alice In Wonderland



We also have an extensive schools package which is ideal for schools participating in ArtsMark and Arts Award, the shows and workshops available also provide great curriculum enrichment, including literacy, SMSC, Music, Art and Physical Education.

For more information about the shows on offer take a look at our Schools’ Programme here.

You can download the Now it’s your turn! Enrichment Pack here.

Can You Name Our Festival Bears?

Can you help us #NametheBears?

What are our bears called? And where did they come from?

Tell us what you think their story is or just suggest a name for each of them by sending it to by 23 June and we will announce the winner on the last day of the Festival.

Winners will be drawn from entries around the region and will win tickets to a Children’s show in their nearest venue.

Once Upon a Festival 2017 is sponsored by

Kindly Supported by Bury St Edmunds Town Council