Glasgow is a city of constant reinvention with a community of people who are creative and adaptable to change. Many city businesses, venues and organisations have redesigned their offer to bring all the things we love about Glasgow to you, virtually.
Whether that’s crafts you can master at home or film and music 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.
Take a tour of the Mackintosh House at the Hunterian Art Gallery and explore room by room the detailed design and interiors of Charles Rennie Mackintosh and his wife Margaret Macdonald Mackintosh's home. Visit the Hunterian website to take the 360° virtual tour of the house and click on the hot spots to find out more about key objects.
We can also enjoy some new artwork thanks to proud Glaswegian and local artist Lee Robertson who has launched his first virtual exhibition ‘Love Letter to Glasgow’. Follow the map on the Love Letter Glasgow website to reveal the pieces of art and the inspiration behind them. Two years in the making, the exhibition was originally due to be held in Sogo Arts on the Saltmarket. While Compass Gallery has an online exhibition, Gregor Smith RSW – Four Points: A Geographical Journey, a stunning collection of artwork capturing the beauty and drama of the landscapes he visits. Visit www.compassgallery.co.uk before the end of November to view the exhibition.
You can now also experience the Glasgow City Centre Mural Trail from the comfort of your own home. Access their Audio Map online and 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.
Tramway TV is an exciting project combining film, artist conversation, digital performances and online interventions from visual artists and performance makers from Scotland and beyond. The videos are broadcast weekly via IGTV and freely accessible on Instagram for two weeks after. Some artists presenting work include Farah Saleh, Project X and Aya Kobayashi. Keep an eye on Tramway's website for more announcements and future programming.
The University of Glasgow is currently running a Being Human Festival, culminating with a special closing event on St Andrew's Day. The performance A Poetic Constitution for Scotland is a play inspired and informed by the public responses from throughout the festival into the question of 'what being Scottish/new Scottish means today?' You can register for free tickets for A Poetic Constitution for Scotland at EventBrite.
Thanks to some of the city’s best nightlife venues, we can still enjoy our favourite music and entertainment from the comfort of our living room.
Creativity continues... from home, for now. This is the strapline to the National Theatre of Scotland’s (NTS) season of digital short artworks, Scenes for Survival. 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 55 unique films, which can viewed via the National Theatre of Scotland's YouTube channel. NTS are also streaming their latest production, Lament for Sheku Bayoh, on November 20 and 21. Purchase tickets in advance and pay what you can (anything between £5-£25) and sit down to this urgent performance based on a true story. Check out our festive section further down in this article for more virtual performances from NTS and other arts organisations.
Meanwhile, Scottish Opera have films you can view online, for free, from the comfort of your living room, with the announcement of two new digital performances for winter 2020/21. A modern adaptation of Mozart's Così Fan Tutte, filmed at the Theatre Royal, will be available to watch via www.scottishopera.org.uk from December 13. In January, they will stream a new version of the much-loved fairy tale, Hansel and Gretel, with a live performance for summer 2021 currently being rehearsed via zoom by the Scottish Opera Young Company.
Scottish Ballet has announced their winter programme which includes their first ever feature film and a series on online ballet classes taught by their dancers. Their short film, The Swan is free and available to view until November 26 and classes for all levels and ages are currently running - for details visit Scottish Ballet's website. They also have their first ever feature film, The Secret Theatre, due to air on December 21 - check out our festive section for more info!
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. You can also subscribe to their new Digital Season which runs from October - February 2021 and features ten stunning concerts filmed in the RSNO's studio. Head to their website to explore what's on and sign up.
The annual Piping Live! Glasgow International Piping Festival took place online in August with live-streaming gigs and talks, some of which are still available to watch, including Piper of the World Talks - visit www.pipinglive.co.uk to view.
Glasgow Science Centre has an entirely online section dedicated to bringing science into people's homes, with exciting and creative activities from make your own lava lamp to design-a-saurus to festive science. Check out the award-winning GCSatHome section and bring the fun of science into your home.
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 Glasgow Distillery, on dates throughout November and December, 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 with Once Upon a Whisky 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 are also hosting their popular virtual tastings. Book a slot with Glengoyne Distillery and your tasting kits will be delivered ahead of the event.
Check out Braw Wee's Craft Club for a great range of private and 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.
If crafting is not your thing then 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. Visit the Libraries section of glasgowlife.org.uk for details.
Christmas 2020 is going to be different this year but you can still #LoveGlasgowThisChristmas with an array of events and online activities lined up this season to bring a bit of sparkle into your home.
The worlds of the Snow Queen and The Sugar Plum Fairy will collide in Scottish Ballet's first ever feature film, The Secret Theatre. The show will premiere on December 21 and will be available to watch until December 24. Tickets are free and can be purchased on Scottish Ballet's website.
From December 22 to January 4, the National Theatre of Scotland will present Rapunzel, a hairy tale adventure. Filmed in the stunning Stirling Castle, expect sparkling showtunes and families will receive a festive fun pack too. For more information on how to stream Rapunzel visit nationaltheatrescotland.com.
The Tron Theatre's Ali the Magic Elf is ideal for younger children (aged 3-8 years old). The live show which was captured on film last year will be available to view on demand from December 16-25. Find out more about Ali the Magic Elf here.
Glasgow company Cryptic are encouraging people to get involved with Sonic Lights and brighten up the winter by creating their own light and sound installation in windows, gardens and streets. Cryptic are asking people to share their images with them and they will create an online gallery showing communities lighting up across the globe. Visit Cryptic's website for details on how to get involved.
The Glasgow Science Centre are hosting a Christmas Extravaganza on December 11. The free event (donations are encouraged) includes Christmas crafts, games, prizes-to-be-won and festive science - book to join the live stream at the Glasgow Science Centre website.
While the majority of our shops are closed under Level 4 Scottish Government guidelines, many of the city's Christmas markets have moved online this year. Billed as the UK's first immersive virtual market, Supermarket is open from November 22 to December 13. You can ‘walk around’ and browse the individual stalls of over 150 independent Scottish brands online, fill your basket, and then get it posted to your door for free. They are also running a series of workshops for adults and children, including book-binding and dried flower wreath making. Visit Supermarket events to find truly unique gifts this Christmas. Other festive markets going virtual this year include Bungo Christmas Market on December 5-6, selling lots of local gifts from Glasgow creators. Visit the Bungo Blog for more details.
Why not book a festive workshop or class in place of a work or friends' Christmas night out this year? Sign up to a John Lewis festive workshop and learn how to create your own pom pom wreath, bake a gingerbread loaf or make a merry cocktail. View the schedule of John Lewis festive workshops here, taking place from November 4 - December 24, and decide which one, or more, to book!
The Santa Dash is one of the highlights on the Glasgow Christmas calendar each year, as hundreds of people dress as santa and take part in a communal run around the city for charity. Sign up for this year's virtual 5k Santa Dash, don your festive gear and raise money for the Beatson Cancer Charity.
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 Glasgow's amazing food scene from home and keep an eye on Glasgow's Best Restaurants website for updates too.
Sign up to Glasgow Club's Digital Membership giving you access to 20 live classes per week, on-demand access to workout videos and loads of other benefits. Check out their website for more information and to join.
For ideas and inspiration on how to enjoy and experience the city at the moment, check out our Glasgow Now section.
Article last updated: November 2020