Billed as Europe’s premier winter music festival, Celtic Connections opens in Glasgow on 19th January, with an uplifting display from some of folk’s brightest emerging talent, established artists Scottish and international, plus a host of artists new to the festival, including strong classical, afro and ‘indie’ contingents. Now celebrating its 30th anniversary, the full 2023 Celtic Connections programme promises a vibrant mix of lively in-person concerts, intimate-scale sessions, an exciting digital programme and a number of talks and exhibitions, in all involving more than 300 events involving 2,000 musicians from 50 countries. The Transatlantic Sessions, which remains an enduringly popular component of the festival, returns to the Royal Concert Hall, this year on the closing night, 5th February.
Online editor David White adds: There’s no festival like Celtic Connections – the programme is so enormous it has something for everyone. Two events I’m really looking forward to seeing are The Afro-Celt night on 27th Jan at St Luke’s (see our review), and ‘Leventime’ – the tribute to unique songwriter Jackie Leven, led by author Ian Rankin and featuring a host of top musicians and singers, including Jackie’s partner Deborah Greenwood (Oran Mor, 4th Feb).