Arts Access - Online Arts and Culture (Festive Edition)

Festive Events  |  Opera and Classical Music  |  Theatre  |  Literature  |  Dance Comedy  |  Film  |  Arts and Culture Virtual Tours  |  Scottish Art Gallery and Museum Tours   Life Drawing Scottish History and Culture  

Festive Events

Visually Impaired Programme Online: Christmas Workshop – National Galleries Scotland Join us for a special festive online session exploring art through audio-description and conversation for participants with a visual impairment. In this session, we will discuss some of the most interesting nativity scenes from the Scottish National Gallery collection. (Free)(Online) 

Descriptive Tour for Visually Impaired Visitors of Lauriston Castle at Christmas – Join us for a special Christmas Tour at Lauriston Castle specifically designed for visually impaired visitors. Step back in time and experience life in Edwardian Edinburgh at Christmas. Marvel at the sumptuous rooms and beautiful décor. (Free) (Online)

Lecture: Token of Festive Magic: The Victorian Christmas – Lauriston Castle A special festive lecture. Join artist Tessa Asquith-Lamb for an exploration of the 19th century Christmas through antique objects, many from her own collection which inspire her intricate etchings. Explore the history of delicate glass Christmas tree birds, original Victorian crackers, Christmas cards, and ephemera and how they reflect the spirit of Christmas Past. (Free)(Online)

An Edwardian Christmas – Lauriston Castle It’s Christmas 1910. There are conflicting views on the creeping commercialisation of Christmas and the English effect on the Protestant values of the Scottish people. However, all family and staff come together to enjoy the season. Edinburgh Living History are our multi award- winning team, who interpret the history of the castle in a variety of entertaining ways in Edwardian costume – bringing alive the history of the house. (Free)(Online)

Ceilidh Craic & Culture Club streams online events each month which features the very best in traditional music from the Scottish Dance Band world as well as the Folk and World music scene, compèred by BBC Scotland presenter, Gary Innes. (Paid)(Online)

Carols by Candlelight: St Paul’s (in support of Breast Cancer Now) Alternatively, tune in and sing along to classic carols from the comfort of your own home throughout December with our virtual option. (Paid)(Online) 

Nutcracker Ballet – Russian State Ballet & Opera House The Russian State Ballet and Opera House presents The Nutcracker ballet performed by National Opera and Ballet Theatre of Mari El. Music by Pyotr Tchaikovsky. (Free)(Online)

Cinderella Online – Panto Live the World’s First Interactive Online Live Pantomime! (Paid)(Online)


Breath Cycle – Scottish Opera For people with breathing difficulties and those recovering from COVID-19. Singing is a fun and creative way to improve your health and wellbeing – no experience necessary! The benefits of singing regularly are widely recognised, from improved lung function and circulation to a strengthened immune system, improved posture, and better breath control – it can even provide relief from stress and anxiety. (Free)

SCO – The Lark Ascending Ryan Wigglesworth makes a welcome return to the SCO for a specially recorded online concert of poignant nostalgia and bracing energy. We start proceedings with the ecstatic rapture of Vaughan Williams’ evergreen nature portrait The Lark Ascending, with former SCO Leader Benjamin Marquise Gilmore as soloist. (Free)

Scottish Opera: On Screen A growing collection of Scottish Opera films, including brand new commissions from contemporary music makers, re-workings of much-loved favourites and staged concert performances. Created exclusively to be experienced on-screen. (Free) (Captioned and audio described performances available)

RSNO – Autumn Digital Season live-streaming six stunning concerts from the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall on Saturday nights. (Paid)

RSNO – Free Digital Content Digital content including ‘Spotlight on our Orchestra’, ‘For the Family’, ‘Digital Season Highlights’ , ‘Our Chorus’ and ‘Principals in the Spotlight’. (Free – scroll to bottom half of their page)

Theatre Listings

Carry Me Home: A Ferry Tale – National Theatre of Scotland The film follows a return journey home to the islands, reflecting the warm, welcoming heart of Scotland’s coastal communities. Hopeful and uplifting, it ebbs and flows through loss, understanding and acceptance. (Free)(Audio Described performance)(BSL performance

Thirteen Fragments – National Theatre of Scotland  An artistic response to the Royal Society of Edinburgh (RSE) Post Covid-19 Futures Commission addressing how Scotland can emerge from the pandemic as a more equitable society. Rooted in the experience of the last year as a woman of colour, this intimate digital artwork brings artforms together to explore the meaning of female resilience in Scotland today. (Free)(Captioned Performance)(Audio Described Performance)

Sundown Stories – Capital Theatres Sundown Stories is a series of short stories adapted for film for anyone who might enjoy a calming and relaxing story. The stories, written by and for persons living with dementia, are delivered in a calming environment, a gentle pace and soothing tone. (Free) (Captioned, some BSL, Dementia Friendly)

The Dream Frequencies – Traverse (Audio Play) Journey with MJ and his contributors from dusk until dawn – from the unsettling to the bizarre to the soothing and back again – in this immersive audio theatre experience which transports listeners into the unknown and unexpected worlds inside the heads and under the eyelids of others. (Free)(Transcript available for each episode)

StageText Listings of online captioned performances, talks and events from across the UK. (Free and Paid)(Captioned)

Vocal Eyes Provides listings of Audio Described online theatre performances and events accessible to blind and partially sighted people. (Free and Paid) (Audio Described)

Literature Listings
Online Guide to Scottish Poets – The Scottish Poetry Library Online A popular resource for lovers of poetry the world over (Free)

National Library of Scotland Explore the collections online. (Free)


Starstruck – Scottish Ballet One of the first choreographers to bring the ‘American style’ to Europe, the legendary Gene Kelly was invited to create an original work for the Paris Opera Ballet in 1960. His jazzy, joyful Pas de Dieux was highly acclaimed at the time as ‘a breath of fresh air’ but has been rarely performed since. It has now been given a new set of wings for its UK stage debut and world premiere on screen. (Paid)

SBTV – Scottish Ballet Online Trailers, tutorials, behind the scenes videos and short documentaries from Scottish Ballet. (Free)

Comedy Listings

The Stand on Demand Archive of performances from The Stand comedy club. (Paid)

Film Listings features hand-picked films to watch or download. From forgotten gems to festival-fresh cinema. From cult classics to award-winning masterpieces. Changes daily.   (Paid)

British Film Institute Rent the latest releases, subscribe to classics and explore the best from the BFI, national and regional archives. (Paid and free)

Virtual Tours

Weymss Caves, Scotland 4D tour online. (Free)

Edinburgh Landmarks Virtual Tours of Edinburgh’s buildings, attractions, view points and famous streets. Use the arrows to move around and explore. (Free)

Arts and Gallery

CCA Annex An online project space for interviews, films, essays, publications and performances from Glasgow’s Centre for Contemporary Arts (Free)(Accessible website options) 

Ray Harryhausen:  Titan of Cinema virtual exhibition experience – National Galleries of Scotland The virtual experience includes five specially created films, images and texts from the exhibition, and archive films and objects from Ray Harryhausen’s life and work and 3D model videos. (Paid)

National Galleries of Scotland Explore the collections online. (Free)

Night Walk for Edinburgh – The Fruitmarket Gallery Following Janet Cardiff’s voice and walking in her footsteps, as you participate in Night Walk for Edinburgh you will be led through the backstreets of Edinburgh’s Old Town, unravelling a disjointed tale – part game-playing, part surrealistic poetry, perhaps even a murder mystery – layered with history, invention and memories. (Free)

2020: Stories, Portraits, Visions – Scottish National Portrait Gallery Online and in gallery, a display which offers visitors an opportunity to reflect on the events of this year and glimpse brief snapshots into other lives lived during this difficult and troubling time. (Free)

National Museums of Scotland Explore the collections online. (Free)

Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Sculpture Park described virtual tour. (Visual Impaired Accessible. Free)

Life Drawing

The ATYN online drawing club All are welcome to join from anywhere in the world. We can all sketch together, taking 2 hours to relax and create. (Paid)

Scottish History & Culture Listings

 Scottish Storytelling Centre Online Events A selection of online events from the Scottish Storytelling Centre. 

Self-Guided Audio Walks Compiled by The University of Edinburgh a collection of walking routes and audio tours of Edinburgh, Scotland and beyond. (Free)  

The National Library of Scotland Moving Image Archive (formerly the Scottish Screen Archive) has something for everyone. Explore around 100 years of Scotland’s history captured by amateur and professional filmmakers. (Free)

SCRAN Cultural heritage learning blog which offers digital access to over half a million photographs, moving images and sounds from museums, galleries, libraries, archives and the media. (Free)

Lost Edinburgh an online, interactive archive, allows its followers to share, discuss and learn from the city’s colourful past through like minded individuals and even the city’s own residents. (Free)

Historic Environment Scotland Explore the collections online – archaeology, buildings, industrial and maritime heritage. (Free) Dig deep into the history of places in Scotland and beyond to discover fascinating insights into hidden stories and histories of buildings, towns and cities. (Free)

Tobar an Dualchais contains a wealth of Gaelic and Scots recordings such as folklore, songs, music, history, poetry, traditions, stories and other information.  (Free)

Historic Environment Scotland Explore their object collection online. (Free)

School of Scottish Studies Archives Explore an online collection of traditional music from the Shetland Isles. (Free)

Please note: Artlink is not responsible for the content of external links, and some sites may require registration and/or payment to view content.

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