Glasgow is a city of constant reinvention and therefore has a community of people who are creative and adaptable to change. As the city begins to reopen, there are still some businesses, venues and organisations that are not able to open their doors just yet so have redesigned their offer to bring all the things we love about Glasgow to you, virtually.
Whether that’s recipes and crafts you can master at home, fascinating facts about our much-loved museums, or music and comedy you can just sit back and enjoy, there are plenty of things to keep your days full and your minds active.
Here's just a selection of what’s out there to be enjoyed.
We are all missing being able to visit our much-loved museums and attractions but thankfully, Glasgow Museums are helping us to enjoy the collections from home by sharing some pictures and facts about the city’s world-class art and artefacts. The kids are also being kept busy with tutorials and fun crafts and games, all inspired by the magnificent and varied collections from across the museums. Keep an eye on their social channels for something new every day.
The Hunterian Art Gallery and Museum have also been working hard to bring us Insight Talks online along with a series of virtual exhibitions including A Curator’s Choice, Edwin Morgan: An Eardley On My Wall and Robert the Bruce, which offer an opportunity to see some of the museum’s outstanding collections from the comfort of your own home. And with the Mackintosh House closed (for now), they have recently launched a 360° virtual tour. Explore the house, room by room, and click on the hot spots to find out more about key objects.
Although we can’t visit Mackintosh at the Willow right now to marvel at and enjoy its beautiful interiors designed by Glasgow's iconic architect and designer, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, the team there are still keeping busy. They have a new blog on their website telling stories of the history and the recent renovation of this beautifully restored tearoom and they are also sharing recipes for some of their delicious cakes.
The Charles Rennie Mackintosh Society has also launched a new online video tour of Mackintosh Queen’s Cross. Developed by volunteers and staff, the 17-minute tour will guide you around the building while learning about its hidden histories and where it fits within Mackintosh's career, introducing you to his progression as an architect, designer and artist. Donations are welcome to support the work of the Society.
We can also enjoy some new artwork thanks to proud Glaswegian and local artist Lee Robertson who has launched his new virtual exhibition ‘Love Letter to Glasgow’. Two years in the making, the exhibition was originally due to be held in Sogo Arts on the Saltmarket. While Compass Gallery has a new online exhibition titled Quiet World, designed to remind us of the world waiting outside. It features artworks that are both new to the gallery or have been exhibited within the gallery over the years.
You can now also experience the Glasgow City Centre Mural Trail from the comfort of your own home. With their new Audio Map, you can virtually visit more than 25 of the city’s much-loved murals and learn more about the inspiration behind these stunning works of art which bring vibrant bursts of colour to the streets of the city centre.
And while we can’t go out to enjoy performances, our amazing performing arts organisations are keeping us entertained.
The National Theatre of Scotland’s new season of digital short artworks, Scenes for Survival has been created in association with BBC Scotland, Screen Scotland, BBC Arts’ Culture in Quarantine project and Scotland’s leading theatre venues and companies, with support from Hopscotch Films. Each artwork has been created by a quarantine creative team, connecting remotely, made up of a performer, writer and director and filmed from their personal spaces of isolation. Over 100 leading artists including Brian Cox, Maureen Beattie and Greg Hemphill have collaborated to create and release more than forty unique films.
The Royal Conservatoire Scotland has RCSatHome, a regular schedule of content curated by the students, staff and alumni, designed to spread joy. You’ll find a great mix of music performances, short film screenings and alumni spotlights.
Scottish Ballet has released performances for audiences to enjoy online, and have also been continuing their SB Health digital dance classes. Join in with them on Facebook Live from Monday – Friday. Check their website to view the full schedule.
Meanwhile, Scottish Opera have launched The Narcissistic Fish, their first Opera Short. Set in the kitchen of a restaurant, it tells the story of the stormy relationship between chefs Angus, Kai and Belle.
Tramway TV is an exciting new project combining film, artist conversation, digital performances and online interventions from visual artists and performance makers from Scotland and beyond. The videos will be broadcast weekly via IGTV and freely accessible on Instagram for two weeks after. Some artists presenting work will include Farah Saleh, Project X and Aya Kobayashi. Keep an eye on Tramway's website for more announcements and future programming.
Staying in is the new going out. Thanks to some of the city’s best nightlife venues, we can still enjoy our favourite music, comedy and entertainment from the comfort of our living room. There is no excuse for having a quiet weekend when there is all this to keep us occupied.
The Royal Scottish National Orchestra (RSNO) has completed its Friday Night Club series but the 15 concerts, featuring never seen before footage, are still available to watch and enjoy online. Meanwhile, The Stand Comedy Club’s ‘Saturday Night Live’ shows continue to entertain us virtually with a lineup of some of the world’s best stand-up comedians broadcasting from their own homes!
The team at Glasgow Film Theatre have announced that the venue will reopen on August 31. As they prepare for this behind the scenes, their weekly Friday Twitter chats will continue with film recommendations and discussions which everyone can join using #athomewithGFT. They will soon be announcing a new live video series too. You can also help support their reopening plans by making a donation, purchasing a gift voucher or becoming a member.
Glasgow is renowned for its year-round programme of colourful festivals and world-class events so it’s good news that just because we can’t be there in person, it doesn’t mean we have to miss out.
The annual Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival is going online this year. From August 8–16, they will bring some of the usual flavour of the festival to you at home. They will be live-streaming gigs, competition and talks.
Glasgow Mela, the city’s multi-cultural festival of music and dance normally held in Kelvingrove Park, will be going online in 2020. Live on YouTube from September 20-30, you can enjoy singing, dancing and show-stopping performances.
We are all figuring out new ways to fill our time and what better use than to learn a new skill and build our knowledge.
Once Upon A Whisky is bringing virtual tastings to your home. In collaboration with Red Bus Bistro and The Dram Team, you can join them on a virtual tour across distilleries, regions and flavours and they will also share stories, facts, myths and of course fantastic whisky! Book in for a virtual tour and you will receive, in the post, a set of five miniatures of high-quality whisky to allow you to take part in the session.
Glengoyne Distillery is set to reopen on August 1 but are still hosting their popular virtual tastings. Book a slot and your tasting kits will be delivered ahead of the event.
Check out Braw Wee for a great range of online craft workshops where you can hone your talents, from lampshade making to arm knitting. Visit their website to book a session. Sew Confident, also have online sewing classes where you can create a range of clothes from hoodies to dresses.
R-Cade, Glasgow’s retro gaming arcade, has weekly online gaming sessions but also run ‘What a Load of Craft’ with tutorials on various crafts from crochet to embroidery. So, grab a cuppa and enjoy some chat while you learn.
If crafting is not your thing then why not sign up to learn a new language with Alliance Francaise Glasgow’s new online French summer classes for adults. You could research your family history on the Mitchell Library's website or join Glasgow Libraries for free for access to some great e-resources with everything from historical newspapers to encyclopaedias and business tools. Or maybe you just want to lose yourself in a book for a few hours. With access to over 10,000 ebooks and audiobooks to members, you’ll be spoilt for choice.
Many of the city's favourite pubs and restaurants have now been allowed to reopen but for those foodie spots where we can’t yet dine in, many have adapted to offer takeaway and delivery services. Check out our round-up of a selection in each neighbourhood and keep an eye on Glasgow's Best Restaurants for updates too. The Glasgow Pantry is also supporting Glasgow's favourite food and drink businesses by sharing cook-a-longs, live tasting sessions, cocktail making, recipes, cupboard challenges and more.
It's good news that many of our outdoor sports facilities are open once again but as many gyms and sports clubs are not able to get back up and running just yet, there are still other ways we can all keep active.
Glasgow Club is continuing Glasgow Club at Home with free workouts, from metafit to mindfulness to keep you healthy in body and mind. There are live-streaming classes available every day. Go to myglasgow.club/customer where you can access the live stream and the most up to date timetable.
Organisers of the Great Scottish Run have a new online challenge for everyone. Great Run Solo is a virtual running challenge to keep you moving. Costing £10, all profits are going to the NHS. You can complete weekly or monthly challenges and there are also options for junior runners so you can get the whole family involved.
Helping to keep our minds active, Football Memories Scotland is the world's first national sports reminiscence programme and is a partnership between the Scottish Football Museum and Alzheimer Scotland where they are sharing images, stories, quizzes and facts about the beautiful game in Scotland.
We encourage everyone to stay safe but Glasgow is ready with our famously warm welcome when you can visit us again. In the meantime, what's on offer is constantly changing so please check back here again soon for updates.
Article last updated: July 2020