Category Archives: Event

Away with words

Never been wowed by words! (Gasp)  Check out Words Per Minute  – but make it fast!  This fantastic spoken-word extravaganza is coming to an end with their last show this Sunday 6 May at the Arches, 4pm.

Words Per Minute, GlasgowIf you’ve been to a spoken word event before but been disappointed or never ventured  fearing boredom, drivel or pretentiousness,  allow WPM to ease your mind and pleasantly surprise.

For the last few years it’s been showcasing the best of  new and more established writers  and performers with a few songs and other creative antics thrown in for good measure.

A word-fuelled journey

Truthfully when I went along I didn’t quite know  what to expect but any apprehension quickly dissolved.  It’s relaxing, welcoming – really almost like hanging out in the living room of a friend – an energetic, engaging and thought-provoking friend – who just happens to have a stage and a microphone.

Champions from the UK vs. USA Sunday special were definitely the humorous and expressive American Samuel Taradash and the utterly fantastic London-based Caroline Bird.   Both were captivating, convincing and effortlessly took us along on their wonderful, word-fuelled journey.

Celebrate living, breathing words

This laid-back gathering celebrates words in all its many form – speaking, singing, reminiscing, ranting and recounting.  It provides rare intimate moments where performers share their inner workings and writing (close up), interacting with you in a way that words on a page could simply never do.

All good things must (never) come to an end

My only regret is that I didn’t go long before their penultimate show.  We’ll wave goodbye to this fantastic regular Sunday statement of expression on the 6th.  But WPM promises to rise and read again – becoming nomads that pop up every from time-to-time.

So, go on – make the most of your (possibly long) weekend.  Do something a little different and witness words alive at this final hooray at the Arches (£5).

–       T

Aye Write – wrong to miss!

Aye write stage, GlasgowI charge across the city after work – arriving out of breath at the Mitchell Library where I follow the vibrant stripes of Aye Write for Pauline Black’s  talk.

This vivacious woman is lead singer of the ska band Selecta, originally formed in 1979.  But tonight isn’t about music.  Tonight she’s talking about her powerful autobiography, Black by Design, charting her life in three stages:

  1. Early childhood as Pauline Vickers – who at the age of four finds out she’s adopted.
  2. The construction of her identity.  She changes her name to Pauline Black,  recognising her ethnicity – something that her adopted white parents alarmingly refused to acknowledge.
  3. Discovering her birth mother –  and her original name Belinda Magnus

With its high ceilings and stain glassed windows,  the Main Hall is like being in someone’s front room – the stage is equally welcoming with two armchairs for poet and novelist Jackie Kay  (who I’m just as thrilled to hear) and Pauline.

Right there – living in the moment

We gather in and Pauline brings us into her fascinating life, sharing extracts from her book that remarkably is both shocking and humorous.  She speaks in a way that takes us there with her in the moment.

Fascinating – not to be missed

This is what Aye Write is about – a magical opportunity to eavesdrop on fascinating discussions, get the lowdown on latest books and insights into unusual subjects.  This festival is not to be missed and is only on for a few more days – so check out the latest programme.   Whether it’s experiencing ’12 minutes of love’  through tango or hearing about trekking across the Antarctic , there’s truly something for everyone.

So snap up tickets while they’re still there for the taking – you’ll be glad you did.

– B

It’s time to play the music; it’s time to light the lights

If you reminisce about a theatre run by an endearing frog and a chaotic cast of weird, wonderful and musically talented characters, then the Glasgow Youth Film Festival (GYFF) is a must.

Glasgow Youth Film Festival posterLast Sunday the GYFF got off to a lively start with the Scottish premiere of The Muppets.   Clearly widely anticipated, the place was as animated as Kermit’s theatre – a buzz with children and adults  who seemed equally excited.

Adding to the already electric atmosphere were the young guys and girls dressed as Kermit, Fozzie bear, Miss Piggy and Gonzo who playfully mingled with the crowed – and rightly so because they had lent a hand in choosing the films for this year’s festival on from 5-15 February.

Laugh-out-loud good

From the opening credits I’m hooked; I hadn’t realised how much I had missed Kermie and his energetic friends.  And it totally lived up to my childhood memories and more – it’s a laugh-out-loud, feel great trip down memory lane.  True to the original show, the film is filled with fantastic celebrity cameos and a brilliant new rendition of Am I a Man or Am I a Muppet  that will stay with me for days.

Muppets and much more

But the festival is much more than just The Muppets; it’s a fantastic offering of the best of films in a diverse and enticing programme.  There are films from Sweden, Bulgaria, Germany, France and Japan alongside the master animators Makota Shinkai & Hayao Miyazaki.   Pleanty of choice for the young and the young at heart.

Outside of the GFT, The Arches is showcasing short films from up-and-coming filmmakers; there’s live theatre performances, post- film discussions and master classes in film direction.

Glasgow Short Film Festival – not to be missed

And if this still isn’t enough Glasgow Short Film Festival has expanded to four full days and runs from the 9-12 February with highlights including the Scottish Short Film Award and International Film Award.  The films are being shown at the Centre of Contemporary Arts (CCA) and all you late-night owl film buffs can mix and mingle till 3:00am at the Berkeley Suite.

February is a cold, dark month so make the most of it and escape into the a bright lights of cinema.  Although I can’t promise that you won’t have mahnahmanah going round your head after a date with the Muppets!


Resolve to discover the new, not abandon the old

It’s dark, it’s cold and the last of your festive cheer has possibly disappeared with your hangover.

2012 quickly approaches and the time has come to make resolutions to be abandoned with gusto.  But this New Years instead of giving up supposed bad habits, why don’t you choose a new year’s resolution of discovery.

Glasgow is overflowing with culture and entertainment – and even better, much of it is free. So even if Christmas has left you waiting for your next pay, there’s no excuse not to see what’s on in Glasgow in 2012.

Trongate 103

Sharmanka Kinetic Theatre at Trongate 103A lively arts hub in the city centre, Trongate 103 holds free events on the first Thursday of every month.  Ranging from film screenings to exhibitions, drama to music from professionals to community members, there’s something for everyone.

Earlier this month I went to the amazing Project Ability exhibition where I was lucky enough to meet the artist and saw a performance of GIRL taking place in a photographic gallery.  It’s a wonderful adventure, you don’t know what the event is going to be like until you are in it, so take a risk and discover something sensational.


If you fancy something more highbrow, then the Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA) hosts a Creative Exchange on the last Thursday of the month. Of course you can be daring an do both.

Explore Glasgow’s museums for free!

Alternatively Glasgow offers loads of free museums, great for adults and kids.  There’s the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, architectural magnificence with storytelling for children on a Saturday morning.

And don’t underestimate the attraction of modern art for kids, at the Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) my boys could stare at things for far longer than me.  The apparent lack of rules of interpretation work and fascinate.

Check out the newly opened Riverside Museum of Transport and Travel featuring the fantastic Flying Scotsman with his specially designed bikes – may look a little bizarre but world records can’t be wrong.

The Southside’s impressive Burrell Collection is set in beautiful grounds with a great play park. And inside there’s hours of exploring to discover with over 1200  collections, 3000 images and a wonderful café to rest tired feet and refuel in.

Discover the People’s Palace on Glasgow Green boasting Billy Connolly’s banana shoes and the best park nearby with enclosed tubular slides.

So bundle yourself up and make grabbing a bit of free culture your New Year’s resolution.  You’ll be glad you did.

– B

What was…. and what will be

It’s been a great year for About a City Glasgow.  OK admittedly we’ve only been doling out our wisdom for the last few months of 2011 – but none the less, it’s been a fabulous experience and we’ve had a truly wonderful time writing each and every blog.

Clock Tower in GlasgowNot that we’re trying to push 2011 out the door – but of course it’s at this time of year that we often reflect on what was and think about the year ahead.

And so on that note – we excitedly welcome 2012 and hope to check out even more places, spaces, events, eateries and everything in between.

A few things at the top of our 2012 ‘to do’ list – in no particular order- includes:

  • Finally finding and crowning the  champion of breakfasts in Glasgow.  But with a slew of worthy of contenders, this won’t be easy.  However, we’re willing to eat our fill of perfectly scrambled eggs, fluffy pancakes and happily drink freshly squeezed orange juice abundantly.
  • Admittedly a lot of our reviews have covered the best of the City Centre and the West End – but not wanting to overlook the glorious South we’ll be exploring the eateries and shops of Glasgow’s South Side and bringing the best of them to you.  Fanatical for bread, Tapa Bake House  is at the top of our list.
  • We’ve also heard rumblings about an exciting culinary concept, Boho Kitchen where  once a month three amateur chefs take on cooking in a professional restaurant. The menu is then marked by the customers!  So watch this space.
  • And speaking of events – in the New Year we hope to bring you even more things happening around this fine City – our curiosity has also been struck by the Spoken Word event  Words Per Minute kicking off at the Arches monthly.  Fusing  bursts of live music, spoken word, short film and theatrical performance – we’re hoping it’s attention-grabbing.
  • And as not to forget the lads – we hope to find the very best place for men to get their haircut in Glasgow.

Of course these are only a few of the things we’ll be exploring over 2012 – and we’re always open to suggestion so let us know about your favourite places to see, thing to do, eat and experience.

Lastly for all of those reading, following and sharing the blog – tweeting and getting in touch with terrific tips – we thank you.  You’re encouragement and enthusiasm keeps us going.

All the best in 2012

– T (and B)

Silent Sunday – November 13

Today 11am – 5pm