Celtic Connections to stage more than 60 live gigs after crowd curbs are lifted

More than 60 live shows will be staged by Glasgow’s Celtic Connections music festival after restrictions on crowd capacities are lifted next week.

Celtic Connections will return to Glasgow's music venues this month. Picture: Gaelle Beri
Celtic Connections will return to Glasgow's music venues this month. Picture: Gaelle Beri

Full-capacity shows will be staged across 14 days in venues around the city after the Scottish Government confirmed the easing of measures introduced on Boxing to try to halt the spread of the Omicron variant of Covid.

Karine Polwart, Julie Fowlis, Kathryn Joseph, Iona Fyfe, Rachel Newton, Bruce MacGregor, Ross Couper, Karen Matheson and Dean Owens are among the leading Scottish musicians due to appear before live audiences.

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Other confirmed acts include Norman Blake, Bernard Butler, James Grant, Monica Queen, Esther Swift, Blue Rose Code, Sharon Shannon, Adam Holmes, Jill Jackson, Hannah Rarity and Adam Sutherland.

The Royal Concert Hall will be among the venues used for this year's Celtic Connections festival. Picture: Gaelle Beri

Shows by Manran, Talisk, Rura, Sian, Heisk, Gnoss, Old Blind Dogs, The Tinderbox Orchestra, Moxie, The Chair and the Kinnaris Quintet will all be going ahead.

Organisers have announced the revamped line-up for live shows after being forced to cancel much of the planned programme, particularly over the first four days of the festival.

The opening weekend will be limited to recordings of online concerts at the Royal Concert Hall which just 200 ticket-holders will be able to attend in line with the current restrictions.

However full shows will be able to go ahead at the Royal Concert Hall, the Old Fruitmarket, the Mackintosh Church, the Tramway, Saint Luke’s, The Hug and Pint, King Tut’s and The Glad Cafe from Monday night.

Highlights of the planned programme which have been salvaged include a tribute concert to the late Nanci Griffith, a celebration of the work of Orcadian writer George MacKay Brown and a performance of the late Ravi Shankar’s music.

An official announcement from Celtic Connections on the shows going ahead was issued hours after First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed the lifting of the Omicron restrictions on Monday.

The festival said: “We warmly welcome confirmation that live indoor performances can proceed without the capacity limits in Scotland from 24 January.

"We have more than 60 shows still programmed between then and 6 February which we cannot wait to stage.

“These exciting and eclectic performances are going to be truly unforgettable and are made all the more special given the recent uncertainty.

“Tickets for these in-person shows are on sale now and we would encourage everyone who is able to support the festival to join us over the next three weeks for some magical live music once again.

"The safety of audiences, artists and suppliers is central to all of our plans and we are continually working with the Scottish Government and venues to ensure we put all necessary public health measures in place.

“We can also now confirm festival passes for our digital programme will be on sale from 21 January.

“Priced at £25, a digital ticket will give people access to at least 12 hours of exclusive filmed

live content from across the festival for a three-week period starting on 26th January.

"More detail about artists included in the online programme will be revealed when tickets go on sale.

“We also look forward to staging the first of our live filmed sessions at Glasgow’s RoyalConcert Hall this Thursday as our opening night concert, ‘Neath the Gloamin’ Star, comes to life in front of an intimate audience of 200 people.”

CELTIC CONNECTIONS GIGS GOING AHEAD FROM 24 JANUARY

Monday 24th January

Johanna Warren and support – The Hug and Pint, 19.30 - £11.00

Tuesday 25th January

'Scotland Sings Nanci Griffith - MAIN AUDITORIUM (Royal Concert Hall), 19:30 - £22.20 -

£26.95

Chloe Foy and support – The Hug and Pint, 19.30 - £11.00

Brew & a blether - Mackintosh at the willow, 13:00 – £12.10

Wednesday 26th January

'Bruce MacGregor & Friends - Strathclyde suite (Royal Concert Hall), 20.00 - £16.50

David Latto and Support - Glad Café, 20.00 - £15.40

Thursday 27th January

Spell Songs: The Lost Words - MAIN AUDITORIUM (Royal Concert Hall), 19:30

- £27.50

Beyond the Swelkie – Celebrating 'George MacKay Brown - Strathclyde suite (Royal

Concert Hall), 20.00 - £16.50

FARA and Michael Biggins - MACKINTOSH church, 19.30 - £15.40

AK Patterson - Glad Café, 20.00 - £11.00

Brew & a blether with Adam Sutherland - Mackintosh at the willow, 13:00 – £12.10

Friday 28th January

Anoushka Shankar & Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Orchestral Qawwali - MAIN

AUDITORIUM (Royal Concert Hall), 19:30 - £24.20 - £29.15

Manran and Moxie - Tramway, 19.30 - £19.80

Mec Lir with Kinnaris Quintet - Saint Lukes, 19.30 - £16.50

Polly Paulusma and Support – The Hug and Pint, 20:00 - £13.20

The Remedy Club and support - The Glad Café, 20:00 - £15.40

Saturday 29th January

Talisk and JigJam - Old Fruitmarket, 20:00 - £17.60

Matt Carmichael with Seonaid Aitkin: Chasing Sakura – Mackintosh Church, 19.30 - £15.40

BEMIS - Tramway, 19.30 - £16.50

Tinderbox Collective & Kathryn Joseph and Alas De Liona - MAIN AUDITORIUM (Royal

Concert Hall), 19:30 - £16.50

Battle of the Folk Bands - Drygate, 13:00 - £11.00

Paul McKenna Band with Heisk and Trip - Saint Luke’s, 19.30 - £16.50

Ed Dowie and Support - The Glad Café, 20:00 - £13.20

Kirsty Matheson: 100 day of music (talk) - Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, 14.30 - £6.60

Sunday 30th January

'New Voices: Esther Swift - Strathclyde Suite (Royal Concert Hall), 13:00 - £13.75

Fergus McCreadie Trio with Justyna Jablonska & Jyotsna Srikanth - MAIN AUDITORIUM

(Royal Concert Hall), 19:30 - £16.50

'FRETS; GRANT & BUTLER & BLAKE and Monica Queen - St Lukes, 19:30 - £26.40

Monday 31st January

Cat Hepburn & Clara Mann, Leyla Josephine and Ross Willock - The Hug and Pint, 20:00 -

£11.00

'FRETS; GRANT & BUTLER & BLAKE and Monica Queen - The Mackintosh church, 19.30 -

£26.40

David Grubb and support - The Hug and Pint, 20:00 - £11.00

William Prince - King Tuts, 20:00 - £13.20

Tuesday 1st February

Brew & A Blether: Mackintosh at the willow, 13:00 – £12.10

Wednesday 2nd February

Tom Bright and support - The Hug and Pint, 20.00 - £11.00

Thursday 3rd February

Hannah Rarity and The Alt & special guest Kevin Burke - Mitchell Theatre, 19:30 - £16.50

Gnoss and Mairi McGillivray - Mackintosh Church, 19.30 - £15.40

Brew & A Blether: Adam Sunderland - Mackintosh at the willow, 13:00 – £12.10

RANT with The Ledger - MAIN AUDITORIUM (Royal Concert Hall), 19:30 - £16.50

In the Tradition: Eoghan Ó Ceannabhái & Ultan O’Brien with Brìghde Chaimbeul

Drygate, 19:30 - £16.50

Blue Rose Code and Eve Goodman - Saint Lukes, 19.30 - £20.90

Jarrod Dickenson and Catherine MacLellan tbc - CCA, 19.30 - £19.25

Conchur White and support The Hug and Pint, 20.00 - £11.00

Friday 4th February

Adam Holmes and Clare Sands - Drygate, 19:30 - £16.50

Westward the light and Alfi - Mackintosh Church, 19:30 - £15.40

The Shannon Shannon Quartet and the Trials of Cato - NEW AUDITORIUM (Royal Concert

Hall), 19.30 - £20.90

Sing me a story – Cuir Seinn ri Seanchas - Mitchell theatre, 19.30 - £16.50

Old Blind Dogs and Calum Stewart - Saint Lukes, 19.30 - £17.60

Transatlantic Sessions - Royal Concert Hall, 19.30 - £30.80 – £35.75

Lena Jonsson Trio and LYRE LYRE - Strathclyde Suite (Royal Concert Hall), 20:00 - £15.40

Saturday 5th February

Fèis Rois with Avanc - Strathclyde suite (Royal Concert Hall), 13:00 - £14.30

Iona Fyfe and Rachel Hair & Ron Jappy - Strathclyde Suite (Royal Concert Hall), 20:00 -

£15.40

'The Scottish World: Billy Kay, Robyn Stapleton & Special guests - Mitchell Theatre, 19.30 -

£16.50

The Chair and support - Old Fruitmarket, 20:00 - £19.80

Nae Plans Extravaganza - City Halls, 19:30 - £17.60

Heidi Talbot & Dirk Powell with Kim Carnie - Mackintosh Church, 19.30 - £15.40

Eabhal with The Friel Sisters - Oran Mor, 19.30 - £16.50

Sian with Michael McGoldrick Quintet - NEW AUDITORIUM (Royal Concert Hall), 19.30 -

£17.60

RURA & Special Guests and N'famady Kouyaté - Theatre Royal, 19.30 - £22.00 – £26.95

Sunday 6th February

New Voices: Ross Couper - Strathclyde Suite (Royal Concert Hall), 13:00 - £13.75

Danny Kyle Final - Online - Free

BBC Young Trad Musician of the Year Final 2022 - City Halls, 17.00 - £16.50

Transatlantic Sessions - Royal Concert Hall, 19.30 - £30.80 – £35.75

Arooj Aftab and support - Drygate, 19.30 - £15.40

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