VISITORS to Bournemouth’s Pavilion Theatre will get a peak behind the scenes at an event to mark its 90th anniversary.

Free activities, workshops, performances and tours will take place at the Grade II listed theatre and ballroom on Saturday March 16 from 11am until 5pm.

Musician and performer Cameron Lloyd will open the event in the main auditorium, playing a selection of popular tunes and Disney hits on the theatre’s 1929 Compton Organ.

A 200-strong community choir, with youngsters from Muscliff, St Katharine’s, Jewell Academy, Pokesdown, Stourfield and St Walburgas schools will perform a medley of songs from the 1920s to the present day.

Students from the Pavilion Youth Theatre will present a special preview from their forthcoming show Grimm Tales written by Philip Pullman. Strolling theatrical performances from the Pavilion Adult Theatre group will convey ghostly accounts and recreate historical stories from the theatre’s ninety year history.

And there will even be the opportunity for young budding performers to have a go and join in a special theatre workshop. Pavilion Dance South West will also be hosting a free ballroom dancing class.

Guided backstage tours will take visitors into areas which are usually closed to the public, and there will be the opportunity to try on costumes in the dressing rooms and experience being on stage.

A treasure hunt will encourage young explorers to discover interesting features dotted around the building and there will be free face painting.

Copies of archived material, including photographs and show programmes will be displayed in the corridors, kindly supported by the Cinema Theatre Association. A series of 1920s and 1930s vintage vehicles will be exhibited in the car park.

The day will close with a special screening of ‘Enchanting Bournemouth’ – a 1958 Bournemouth council production.

“This is just one of the special events taking place to mark Bournemouth Pavilion’s 90th year” said Pat Coyne, BH Live’s director of venues and events.

“Our open day will give the opportunity to see some of our upcoming talent and also experience a snapshot the theatre’s past.”