The first virtual Celtic Connections has been branded a huge success by organisers after selling an unprecedented number of tickets.
Audiences tuned in from more than 60 countries, with over 27,000 tickets sold to the first digital version of the festival.
Over the last 19 days, viewers watched more than 10.5 million minutes of musical entertainment.
The programme was made up of unique digital content from over 30 specially commissioned projects and performances that were filmed across many of Glasgow’s much-loved venues.
International artists contributed to the diverse line-up by recording performances remotely in over 10 locations – including Mali, Sudan, Nashville and Rajasthan.
The festival was closed out with a special 90-minute programme, celebrating some of the best moments of the festival.
The Celtic Connections 2021 Farewell Concert also showed some unique moments that had not previously been aired before, including a special performance in The Hydro with Hazel Whyte from the National Youth Pipe Band of Scotland playing in the empty venue as dancers Jamiel Laurence and Katie Miller perform a choreographed sequence.
This is the first performance to take place in The Hydro in almost a year.
More than 100 musicians have taken part in Celtic Connections 2021, showcasing their art to the world.
Donald Shaw, creative producer for Celtic Connections, said: “The last 19 days have instilled in us all a renewed sense of hope and optimism.
“Sharing our music and our culture will continue to be an essential part of our human existence and it has been incredible to be able to facilitate this, despite the challenges.
“The feedback we have had really shows just how important music is to people and we are delighted to have been able to help in some way brighten up the darkest January in recent history.
“As the curtain falls on this digital Celtic Connections 2021, I’d like to say such a huge thanks to so many people, to the community of musicians across the world who have gone above and beyond to provide the most incredible music, to the team behind the scenes who have made this happen and to the audiences who have tuned in and supported the festival from all across the world. A heartfelt thank you to you all.”
Councillor David McDonald, chair of Glasgow Life, said: “Celtic Connections has been a wonderful series of performances and concerts which will be remembered more for the exceptional quality of the programme and the musicians who performed and less for the challenges of the time.
“Night after night we were reminded about what makes Celtic Connections unique and even though we weren’t physically together to enjoy it, everyone who watched or performed or worked to deliver the festival was a crucial part of its success.
“That so many people around the world wanted to watch demonstrates again just how important and popular Celtic Connections is.”
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “I congratulate Celtic Connections on the success of its first wholly digital festival.
“All of the musicians who have performed this year have brought joy and brightness to many through the dark winter, giving audiences the chance to enjoy the sheer talent of their music and performances.
Alan Morrison, Head of Music at Creative Scotland said: “Every artist has given their all, restoring our faith in the power of Scotland’s music.
“Not only that – the digital presentation has been flawless, and Celtic Connections has set the digital bar high for every other festival to follow.”
Celtic Connections is delivered by the charity Glasgow Life and is funded by Glasgow City Council, Creative Scotland and The Scottish Government Festivals Expo Fund.