The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra has named Vasily Petrenko as its new Music Director, starting with the 2021-2 season – which will incidentally be the orchestra’s 75th anniversary.
The Russian conductor has also annouced that he’ll step down as Chief Conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra in July 2021, bringing to a close a highly successful 15 year partnership. Among the accolades he has received from Gramophone includes Recording of the Month in March 2017 for Tchaikovsky’s Symphonies Nos 3,4 and 6 on Onyx, prompting critic Mark Pullinger to write: ‘I commend Petrenko’s as the finest modern cycle of Tchaikovsky’s symphonies currently available’. He was also named our Artist of the Year at the 2017 Awards – the result of a public vote – which followed on from him having been named our Young Artist of the Year exactly a decade earlier.
Petrenko is also Chief Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, a post he steps down from in 2020, at which point the RPO will official designate him Music Director Designate. He succeeds Charles Dutoit, who resigned in January this year. Petrenko made his RPO debut in 2016, conducting Mahler’s ‘Resurrection’ symphony, returning to conduct Verdi’s Requiem last year. ‘I am delighted to become Music Director at this stage in the RPO’s history,’ said Petrenko. ‘The RPO has a very modern approach and a youthful energy which underpin its music-making. We want to attract new and, especially, young audiences, embrace digital technologies and structure exciting seasons in London which can then be toured nationally and internationally.’