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Written by on 14/01/2016

Celtic-Connections-300x90The world’s largest winter celebration of Celtic music opens today in Glasgow with a celebratory concert bringing together a line-up of Scottish singers that will never be repeated, as well as more than a thousand school children enjoying a free morning concert.

Throughout the rest of the city musicians are rehearsing for an incredible first weekend of concerts and events – for only the first of 18 incredible days making up Celtic Connections 2016.

This morning more than 1,200 children saw the first of the festival’s free morning concerts as part of Celtic Connections’ award winning Education Programme. Pupils from across Scotland – including school groups from as far away as Dunoon, Fife and Ardrossan – will come to the Main Auditorium at Glasgow Royal Concert Hall  to enjoy a fantastic set of traditional music by two-time winner of Scots Singer of the Year Siobhan Miller and her six-piece house band. For many of the children this will be their first experience of seeing a professional band live.

This evening the Opening Concert for Celtic Connections 2016, The Carrying Stream, celebrates the 50th anniversary of the pioneering and hugely influential Traditional Music & Song Association of Scotland (TMSA). A stellar line up of Scottish singers including Arthur JohnstoneSheena WellingtonJimmy HutchisonBarbara DicksonShepheardSpiers & Watson,Kris DreverAdam McNaughtanMischa Macpherson and Malinky, along with international guests Sam LeeThomas McCarthy and Rayna Gellert will take to the stage of the Main Auditorium. Led by musical director Siobhan Miller, this show seeks to capture the unique spirit of TMSA concerts that have been a hugely important part of her life, and the lives of thousands of musicians across Scotland.

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From  “Come and Try Ceilidh Dancing”  to full blow concerts featuring top named artist and bands including Skerryvore, Admiral Fallow, The Chieftains, The Shee, the start of the Late Night Sessions, and the Festival Club and of course the start of the fabulous Danny Kyle Open Stage from the Exhibition Hall in the Glasgow Concert Hall.

All this and just some of the events of the first day, with over 2,500 musicians from around the world gathering in Glasgow for the next 18 days a festival of concerts, ceilidhs, talks, art exhibitions, workshops, free events, late night sessions and a host of special one-off musical collaborations the

Stars of world, folk and roots music,will perform on over two dozen stages at venues across the city of Glasgow and include amongst others Rickie Lee Jones, Lucinda Williams, Karen Matheson, Teddy Thompson, Eddi Reader, Skipinnish,The Chieftains, Lau, The Unthanks, Béla Fleck, Moving Hearts, Robert Plant, Lucinda Williams, Admiral Fallow, Toumani Diabaté, Karine Polwart, Boys of the Lough, and Larry Carlton.

CELTIC CON LOGOWith artists not only from Britain but from Inner Mongolia to Armagh, Senegal to Italy, and Brittany to the Outer Hebrides to Southern Manitoba performing at the festival in 2016 Celtic Connections remains a hotbed of musical talent from cultures and countries from across the globe.