Celtic Connections drew to an end on Sunday, with attendances reaching well over 100,000 for the eighth year in a row and gross ticket sales topping £1.1million.
Over 2000 of the best known artists in traditional and roots music, world, indie, jazz, folk, soul and Americana have descended on Glasgow from all corners of the globe for world-class music.
Highlights of Celtic Connections 2015 included an outstanding, sold-out opening concert with the live world première of Martyn Bennett’s final masterpiece Grit. The fantastic performance, of an almost entirely studio-created album, was lovingly reconstructed by violinist and composer Greg Lawson for a custom-designed orchestra of folk, jazz and classical players.
Other festival highlights of Celtic Connections 2015 included: Van Morrison, Fairport Convention, Calexico, Craig Armstrong with the Orchestra of Scottish Opera, Shooglenifty, Tweedy, Eddi Reader, Treacherous Orchestra, Lambchop, Carlos Núñez, Danú, King Creosote performing ‘From Scotland With Love’, Angélique Kidjo with the RSNO, Punch Brothers, Dick Gaughan, Le Vent Du Nord, Blazin’ Fiddles, Tommy Emmanuel, Hudson Taylor, The Pierces and Taraf de Haidouks, The Mischa Macpherson Trio, Tony Allen and Skerryvore.
Music fans attended approximately 300 concerts, ceilidhs, free events, late night sessions and workshops, which took place in over 20 venues across Glasgow over 18 days.
The Celtic Connections Education Programme also had a successful year, with high profile festival acts including Blazin’ Fiddles, Le Vent Du Nord and Carlos Núñez performing free concerts for school-children in the Royal Concert Hall.
Donald Shaw, Celtic Connections Artistic Director, said: “Celtic Connections 2015 has been fantastic with attendances once again clearing 100,000 for the eighth year in a row. Each January we endeavour to bring exciting new sounds to Glasgow and we’ve seen some world class performances over the past 18 days from countries as far afield as Mali, Brazil, Senegal, India and New Zealand. As well as featuring an array of international acts we’ve celebrated the vibrancy of the Scottish folk scene, which still remains the driving force behind the festival.”