Today the schedule and ticket sales for Celtic Connections 2017 were released. I’m sure this festival has been mentioned before during class and, as a regular concert-goer myself, I absolutely love it.

This is Scotland’s biggest Celtic music festival and features folk musicians from Scotland as well as from the rest of the world. The festival takes place in Glasgow and this year has over 300 events over the two weeks. These events include concerts, workshops, talks and the occasional ceilidh.

The festival plays an important part in Scotland’s cultural calendar – it attracts visitors from all over the world. The festival has been recognized for its contribution to traditional music and culture yet, at the same time, it showcases new talent that might otherwise have gone undiscovered. They run a scheme called New Voices, where some of the festival profits go towards commissioning young artists to write a new piece of music.

This clash of tradition and innovation is important as it allows folk music to reach a new audience. Bands such as Treacherous Orchestra (look them up, seriously!) and Skerryvore use traditional folk instruments and draw on old Celtic roots, yet create a newer, more experimental, more contemporary sound. I saw both bands play in Paisley last weekend and, although it was almost definitely a folk concert, the atmosphere was more like that of a rock concert, and it was performed to a much younger demographic.

The full programme for the Celtic Connections can be found here, if anyone is interested.

Featured image taken from http://www.bbc.co.uk/scotland/music. This is a picture of Treacherous Orchestra playing at the Old Fruitmarket in Glasgow