2014 is a huge year for Glasgow and the city’s rich culture is set to shine, thanks to the much-anticipated Commonwealth Games and of course the much-debated vote for independence. Along with a packed annual calendar of festivals, cultural events and special anniversaries, it’s time to explore Glasgow in 2014.
This is our guide to the biggest and best festivals and events in Glasgow in 2014 – with something to experience every month in a packed annual calendar.
What: Celtic Connections
Where: 19 locations across Glasgow
When: 16 January – 2 February 2014
Kicking off the annual festival scene is the much-welcomed winter festival, Celtic Connections, which runs for three weeks at various locations across the city. Founded in 1993 this is one of the most influential music festivals on the annual calendar. Don’t miss Danny Kyle’s Open Stage at the Adelaides and a night of WWI Scottish Songs at the Royal Concert Hall to mark the start of the World War I centenary commemorations.
What: Glasgow Film Festival
Where: Glasgow Film Theatre and various other cinemas and theatres
When: Main festival runs from 20 February to 2 March 2014
Embracing all things cinematic, this comprehensive festival includes everything from star-studded globally-recognised films, through to tiny art-house productions. There are over 200 screenings during the festival which is set to attract more than 40,000 film fans in 2014. Alongside the main festival, the Youth Film Festival will run from 2–12 February and the Short Film Festival will run from 13–16 February.
What: Jack Vettriano Retrospective
Where: Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum
When: until 23 February 2014
The newly renovated Kelvingrove Museum will host a retrospective of Jack Vettriano’s work. Born in Fife, the contemporary artist has produced memorable works including Dancer In Emerald, Mad Dogs’s and his most famous painting The Singing Butler.
What: Glasgow International Comedy Festival
Where: Various venues in the city center, west end, south side and east end
When: 14 March to 5 April 2014
Comedians great and small will gather for this riotously funny annual comedy festival which is held at 60 theatres, pubs and clubs across the city. Comedians include Simon Evans, Miles Jupp, Shappi Khorsandi, Omid Djalili and many many more. Glasgow is no stranger to comedy greatness, bestowing Frankie Boyle, Billy Connolly and Gregor Fisher on the world!
What: Glasgow Art Fair
Where: City center
When: 28 to 30 March 2014
Snap up some new art at this exciting new international art fair which showcases the freshest and most innovative original artwork in Glasgow. Browse and buy art, which is set within vibrant and inspiring atmosphere.
What: Aye Write!
Where: Mitchell Library
When: 4 to 12 April 2014
Established in 2005 the Aye Write! event unites authors and literary fans, both young and old. There are also a whole host of free community events and local and international authors gather to speak.
What: Spring Calendar
Where: Glasgow Harbour
Following the massive harbour regeneration scheme in Glasgow, all eyes are on the spring events that will take place here at both the Riverside Museum and the Transport Museum. Spend a day here and take in the Clyde Auditorium which was designed by renowned architect Sot Norman Foster and explore the Glasgow Science Centre.
What: Sevens World Series: Glasgow 7s
Where: Scotstoun Stadium
When: 3 to 4 May 2014
Glasgow goes rugby crazy in May as it holds the Scottish leg of the Sevens Series, with 16 of the best sevens teams in the world competing in front of 30,000. Expect a frenetic-paced two day rugby extravaganza.
What: West End Festival
Where: central Glasgow
When: 6 to 29 June 2014
Usher in the summer festival season with this lively event that thinks it’s a fiesta! Founded in 1996 this is the biggest festival in Glasgow with more than 150,000 people attending over varied 500 events across 75 venues. The lineup for 2014 will be announced soon. ..
What: XX Commonwealth Games
Where: Hampden Park and Celtic Park
When: 23 July to 3 August 2014
The Commonwealth Games bring global attention to Glasgow with 17 sports being played over the event. In total 4,000 competitors will attend from 70 nations. There are a few tickets still available for sports such as the Rugby Sevens and weightlifting. Otherwise you’ll have to join the millions of others who will be watching from their armchairs and pubs across Scotland.
What: World Pipe Band Championships
Where: Glasgow Green
When: August, TBC
This major international festival was established in 1930 and has been held each year at Glasgow Green since 1968. In total more than 8,000 traditional pipers and 120 bands take part.
What: Doors Open Day
Where: Across Glasgow
When: 20 to 21 September 2014
For one weekend each year, more than 1,000 sites across Scotland open their doors for free – including museums, art galleries, stately homes, castles, churches, sports grounds and distilleries. In Glasgow there are hundreds of buildings, walks and talks running throughout the weekend. More details http://glasgowdoorsopenday.com/programme/
What: Glasgay! Festival
Where: City center
When: October, TBC
The 21st annual Glasgay festival will be held once more in celebrations of the city’s diverse culture. In fact this is the biggest multi-arts festival focussed around the LGBT community – although all are welcome to the month-long event. Expect theatre performances, stand-up routines and cinema screenings.
What: Glasgow Beer Week
Where: Various venues
When: November, TBC
Now in its fourth year, this event brings both beer aficionados and amateur brewers together to discuss, and more importantly sample, various different beers. The week-long event includes tastings, heritage events, demonstration on brewing and the odd pub crawl!
What: Hogmanay 2014/15
Where: Various locations
When: End December to beginning of January 2015
There’s nothing quite like seeing in the New Year in Glasgow – the locals really know how to party! The ten day festival runs from just before New Year’s Eve and continues on to about the 5th of January. Expect everything from ceilidhs, dancing, comedy, pantos, parties and skating. The city rings in the start of a new year with traditional bell ringing and whilst you wait, you can always enjoy a spin on the open-air ice rink as the stars dazzle above you. Hogmanay will certainly give you a New Year’s Eve to remember!