Berlin Philharmonic’s next chief conductor: five facts

Posted on: July 7, 2015

“Kirill Petrenko, chief conductor-elect of the Berlin Philharmonic, is still a mystery to most audiences,” writes Amanda Angel on Wednesday (7/1) at New York classical radio station WQXR. “Here are five things to know about the maestro. 1. He rarely does interviews. Notoriously shy in front of the media, Petrenko didn’t even attend the Berlin press conference that announced his appointment. 2. He’s not to be labeled. Born in Omsk, Russia, Petrenko emigrated from his native country at 18. Petrenko is admittedly cagey about performing too much music from his homeland for fear of being pegged as a Russian specialist. 3. Love at first sight. Petrenko has only performed with the Berlin Philharmonic three times. The ensemble and maestro found an instant connection … [in] Scriabin’s Le Poème de l’Extase with the philharmonic. 4. His first job at a symphony orchestra. Petrenko’s Berlin appointment is the maestro’s first at a major symphony orchestra. Petrenko has been known primarily known as an opera conductor. 5. A historic appointment. Petrenko is the first Jewish chief conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic, a meaningful appointment for an organization that just recently explored its complicated relationship with the Nazis during the Third Reich.”

Posted July 7, 2015