Media release: BBC Music invites audiences to tune into landmark event for Celtic Connections


THE music festival – Celtic Connections – is celebrating its 25th year and BBC Music will be marking the milestone with an exciting schedule capturing many of the memorable performances on offer.

The festival – which begins today – again features a terrific line-up of folk and roots musicians from across the world.

BBC Music will be bringing highlights from a range of venues around the host city of Glasgow.

Donalda MacKinnon, director, BBC Scotland, said: “Congratulations to Celtic Connections on reaching the 25-year milestone.

“It’s a testament to the quality of the festival which has become a firm fixture on the music calendar over the years.

“We’re delighted once again to be able to share some of the many terrific performances with our audiences through a great line up of programming during the event.”

The main hub for radio coverage is the CCA in Sauchiehall Street where BBC Radio Scotland, along with Radio 2 and Radio 3, will have a programme of events – both live and pre-recorded.

The coverage at the CCA launches on Tuesday January 23, with a recording of BBC Radio Scotland’s Quay Sessions with Roddy Hart.

Over the following nine days there will be broadcasts from Radio 3’s World On 3 – presented by Lopa Kothari – and Radio 2 will be live on Monday 29 and Tuesday 30, with Mark Radcliffe.

There will also be coverage from Travelling Folk with Bruce MacGregor and Take The Floor with a night of ceilidh dancingwhile Jamie MacDougall celebrates Burns Night on Thursday January 25, live from the CCA.

The programmes at the CCA will draw from the fantastic array of Scottish and international talent visiting the festival and will include appearances from Kathryn Tickell, The Secret Sisters, Talisk, Vasen, Maireadrad Green and Mike Vass, The Rachel Newton Trio, The Deslondes, Lomond Campbell and Lera Lynn.

Tickets for the events at the CCA were available to the public via a free ballot.

Pipeline, with Gary West, will broadcast highlights from the annual pipe band concert at the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, featuring Finlay MacDonald and Jarlath Henderson plusThe Johnstone Pipe Band.

And Another Country, with Ricky Ross, will have a special edition of the show from the BBC’s studios at Pacific Quay – with Laura Cortese and the Dance Cards and Aaron Lee Tasjan.

The City Halls is the venue for the live coverage on Sunday January 28 of the annual BBC Radio Scotland Young Traditional Musician of the Year Final for 2018.

Bruce MacGregor hosts the event which will see six of the country’s top traditional musicians perform and compete for the accolade.

Former winners include Ewan Robertson (Braebach), Mohsen Amini (concertina), singer Robyn Stapleton and Kristen Harvey (Blazin’ Fiddles).

BBC Two Scotland will broadcast one of the main highlights of this landmark festival – Bothy Culture and Beyond. The concert from the Hydro which will air on February 3 features The GRIT Orchestra, led by Greg Lawson, and guests including a special appearance by cyclist, Danny MacAskill.

The event takes as its inspiration the ground-breaking album, Bothy Culture, by the late Martyn Bennett.

In February BBC ALBA will have a special programme on Òrain nan Gàidheal: Songs of the Gael, a collaborative event at the Royal Concert Hall on January 26 which features a stellar cast of contemporary Gaelic singers, performing with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.

Coverage and details of all BBC content at Celtic Connections is available online:

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Contact: Jim Gough