Russian-born conductor, Vasily Petrenko is celebrated for his conducting which has led to several top posts at respected orchestras within the field.
At a young age, Vasily Petrenko studied at St. Petersburg Capella Boys Music School, the oldest music school in Russia. He then went on to complete his studies at St. Petersburg Conservatory, studying under Ilya Musin,Mariss Jansons , and Yuri Temirkanov.
In the early years of his career, Petrenko began at Mikhailovky Theatre from 1994-1997, formerly Mussorgsky Memorial Theatre of St. Petersburg State Opera and Ballet. He was also chief conductor of St. Petersburg State Academic Symphony Orchestra from 2004-2007.
As Chief Conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra since 2009, having served as Principal Conductor since 2006, Petrenko and the orchestra have recorded many times, even with some award-winning albums. Petrenko and Liverpool Phil have recorded the complete cycle of Shostakovich symphonies, Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony and symphonies 1, 2, and 5, and Rachmaninov’s complete symphonies, dances, and piano concertos. Throughout his conducting tenure in Liverpool, Petrenko has notably completed multiple cycles of Beethoven’s symphonies.
Petrenko has served as Chief Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra since 2013 and together they have recorded Shostakovich cello concertos with Truls Mørk on Ondine, Prokofiev’s Romeo and Juliet, and the complete cycle of Scriabin symphonies.
Most recently Petrenko became Chief Conductor of the European Union Youth Orchestra and principal guest conductor of State Academic Symphony Orchestra of Russia which is based in Moscow.
With 30 years of opera conducting experience, Petrenko made his notable debuts in 2010 at Glyndebourne Festival Opera conducting Macbeth and with Opéra de Paris conducting Eugene Onegin.
Petrenko has made frequent appearances at the BBC Proms and won several awards. In 2007, he won Young Artist of the Year at the Gramophone Awards and in 2010 and again in 2012 he won Male Artist of the Year at the Classical Brit Awards.
Vasily Petrenko’s North American engagements include debuts with noted orchestras such as the Philadelphia Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, San Francisco Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and more. He has also made appearances at Aspen and Ravinia summer festivals.
Honoured for his impact on the cultural scene of Liverpool, Vasily Petrenko is the second conductor to ever be presented with an honorary doctorate from University of Liverpool and Liverpool Hope University and an honorary fellowship from Liverpool John Moores University.
Photo credit: Mark McNulty