On Monday German media reported the Russian conductor Kirill Petrenko will succeed Sir Simon Rattle as the Artistic Director by 2018.
Kirill Petrenko the Russian conductor will be taking over the reins as the Artistic Director of the Berlin Philharmonic orchestra from Sir Simon Rattle. Kirill Petrenko will become the Artistic director in 2018 after the British conductor Sir Simon Rattle’s contract expires in the same year.
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The news was announced by the German media on Monday after the details of the appointment was leaked to the Berlin state radio station RBB. The Berlin Philharmonic is also hastily organizing a press conference to take place in the foyer of its famous concert hall to officially announce the news of Kirill Petrenko appointment.
“Words cannot express my feelings – everything from euphoria and great joy to awe and disbelief,” Petrenko, who was not present at the press conference, said in a statement published on the Philharmonic’s website.
“I am aware of the responsibility and high expectations of me, and I will do everything in my power to be a worthy conductor of this outstanding orchestra. Above all, however, I hope for many moments of artistic happiness in our music-making together which will reward our hard work and fill our lives as artists with meaning.”
According to reports the appointment was finalized 6 weeks after a major 11 hours session took place at the Berlin Philharmonic. During the session about 124 members failed to elect a director after Sir Simon rattle announced earlier this year he will not renew his 16 years contract with the Berlin Philharmonic, thus making the vote a necessity. Instead Sir Simon rattle will take his place as the London Symphony Orchestra’s Music Director by September 2017 after being with the Berlin Philharmonic for 16 years.
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Petrenko on the other hand has been working as the Director of the Bavarian state opera since the year 2013. Petrenko was born in the Russian city of Omsk in 1972 but migrated to Austria by 1990; however he did go back to his roots and served as the general music director at the Komische Oper from 2002 till 2007 situated in Berlin. Petrenko previously worked with the Berlin Philharmonic numerous times as a guest conductor in the years 2006, 2009 and 2012.