Culture and Nightlife

As a European City of Culture, Glasgow is rich in arts culture with numerous museums, galleries, theatres and creative hubs located around the city with most museums free to enter.

One of only six UK cities included in the UNESCO Creative Cities Network, Glasgow is home to Scottish Ballet, BBC Scotland, the National Theatre of Scotland, the Glasgow School of Art and Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. The city boasts one of the finest theatre scenes in Scotland with the Tron, the Citizens Theatre and Theatre Royal just a stone’s throw from our campus.

If you’re looking for something a bit quirkier, Glasgow’s West End is renowned for its vintage shops and independent music stores. The city is a shopper’s paradise and the Style Mile is always a popular spot at the weekends.

Food and drink is a big deal in Glasgow, and RCS is well placed amongst some of the best restaurants in Scotland. Named as the most vegan friendly city in the UK, Glasgow restaurants cater for all tastes. Student favourites include The Butterfly and the Pig, Mono and Tchai-Ovna. The city comes alive at night; choose from popular student haunts on Bath Street, the upmarket Merchant City or the fairy-light haven of Ashton Lane. From classic old-school pubs to underground techno clubs, Glasgow has it all.

Live Music

Music is part of Glasgow’s soul. On average, more than 130 live music events take place every week in Glasgow. Students from the School of Music can learn so much from attending the various concerts and gigs taking place around the city, with the Royal Concert Hall, City Halls and the RSNO Centre within walking distance of RCS.

Outside of London, Glasgow is the largest music economy in the UK and is home to almost all of the national orchestras. The iconic Barrowlands Ballroom and King Tuts Wah Wah Hut are two of the most famous music venues in Glasgow, as well as the SSE Hydro, ranked as the fourth best entertainment venue in the world.


Students on drama or production programmes are encouraged to see as much theatre as possible, and in Glasgow this is easy. There are more than a dozen theatres in the city with countless theatre companies, many of whom RCS is in partnership with, including Solar Bear Theatre Company, National Theatre of Scotland and the Citizens Theatre.


  • The Glasgow Film Theatre is a short walk away from the Conservatoire. This independent cinema also encompasses three annual festivals, Glasgow Film Festival, Glasgow Youth Film Festival and Glasgow Short Film Festival – perfect for our Filmmaking students!
  • In the West End, The Grosvenor is a cosy cinema nestled down the cobbled street of Ashton Lane.


Nightlife is a major part of Glasgow’s lure and essential to the student experience. The city comes alive at night, transforming into a lively stream of clubbers, revellers and downright happy people. Choose from nightclub favourites such as the Sub Club (which boasts the longest running weekly house and techno club night in the world) to the popular Garage nightclub which caters for almost everyone’s musical tastes. A night out in Glasgow is something people travel far and wide for; find out why when you arrive.


Living up to its reputation as a thriving arts capital, you can participate or attend a festival in Glasgow every month of the year. Highlights include the Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art, Celtic Connections (the world’s biggest winter music festival), Glasgow Film Festival, Bard in the Botanics and the Glasgow Jazz Festival.