Celtic Connections festival gets under way in Glasgow

  • 19 January 2012
  • From the section Scotland

Scotland's biggest celebration of traditional music - Celtic Connections - has got underway in Glasgow later.

More than 2,000 artists are scheduled to perform at 300 events across 20 venues in the city until 5 February.

Martha Reeves, Aaron Neville and KT Tunstall are among the artists taking part in the 19th festival.

The programme for 2012 celebrates the art of the songwriter and includes tributes to American Woody Guthrie and Scotland's Gerry Rafferty.

The tribute show to Rafferty will be curated by his daughter Martha and long-time friend Rab Noakes.

A line-up featuring The Proclaimers and Barbara Dickson will play at the show, a year on from his death.

Firelight performance

Woody Guthrie - who gathered folk songs in Glasgow in the 1940s - will be celebrated in a special concert featuring Jay Farrar, Yim Yames, Anders Parker and Will Johnson.

The winter festival has grown dramatically since it first began as a way of filling the Royal Concert Hall's January schedule.

The traditional torchlight procession, which signals the start of Celtic Connections, has been suspended this year due to building work in the city centre.

Instead, a special firelight performance was staged on the steps of Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on Thursday afternoon.

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