Celtic Connections to return in 2022 with live performances

The music festival was forced to go online in 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Celtic Connections to return in 2022 with live performances iStock

Celtic Connections will return early next year with live performances after being forced to go online in 2021 due to the pandemic.

The event will be held in Glasgow from January 20 to February 6, with an 18-day programme featuring traditional folk, roots, Americana, jazz, soul and world music.

More than 1000 musicians are due to take part in the 29th edition of the concert series.

The opening concert, ‘Neath The Gloamin’ Star, will feature younger musicians and songwriters.

Celtic Connections creative producer Donald Shaw said it would be a “statement of the festival’s commitment to present and hold up emerging acts, recognising what is being done by young musicians in Scotland and internationally to carry the torch for Scots folk song into the future”.

He added: “There’s no doubt that this year’s festival has an added significance to it, and in the context of the last couple of years, we’re eager to capture the collective human experience that is at the heart of what’s been missing for people – the sharing of experiences, songs, music and stories.

“What allows Celtic Connections as a festival to develop and stand out is the idea that as musicians and audiences, we can all share music, learn from one another and grow – and there is much to be learnt from the next generation.”

The event will also include workshops, theatre productions, ceilidhs and exhibitions.

Alan Morrison, head of music at Creative Scotland, said: “It’s a delight to see Glasgow throwing open the doors to its music venues again, as Celtic Connections gets ready to rejuvenate the city with live, in-person performances.

“Last January’s festival was a cultural lifeline that engaged audiences all over the world, reminding us that music has an uncanny power to draw us together, even in the darkest days of lockdown.

“The 2022 event will be an emotional return, ranging from intimate solo shows to large-scale orchestral extravaganzas, underlining the undisputable fact that Celtic Connections truly has something for everyone.”

David McDonald, chairman of Glasgow Life and depute leader of Glasgow City Council said: “Celtic Connections has played a huge part in supporting and developing talent over the decades and is again putting together an incredible programme which will bring unique and compelling performances from around the world to live audiences in Glasgow, as they were meant to be seen and heard.”

The online version of the festival earlier in the year sold more than 27,000 tickets and attracted audiences from over 60 different countries, with more than 10.5 million minutes of musical entertainment viewed over a 19-day programme.

During the live concerts in January 2020, organisers said about 130,000 people attended more than 300 events, with over 2100 artists from around the world performing.

Celtic Connections was first held in 1994 when it offered 66 events at one venue.

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