Kirill Petrenko was elected yesterday as chief conductor Designate of the Berlin Philharmonic and Artistic Director of the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation. He will succeed Simon Rattle in 2018. He confirmed his acceptance to the orchestra last night.
Petrenko, 43, will need to withdraw as music director of the Bavarian State Opera (although some German media suggest he might retain both posts for a while).
He is the orchestra’s first Russian-born chief, and the first Jewish person to hold that post.
First commentary here.
During an orchestra assembly yesterday Kirill Petrenko was elected by a large majority of the members of the Berliner Philharmoniker as the Chief Conductor Designate of the orchestra and Artistic Director of the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation. He succeeds Sir Simon Rattle, who will leave the orchestra in August of 2018. Kirill Petrenko said: “Words cannot express my feelings – everything from euphoria and great joy to awe and disbelief. 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.”
Orchestra Board members Ulrich Knörzer and Peter Riegelbauer said: “We are extremely pleased that Kirill Petrenko has accepted his election as Chief Conductor Designate of our orchestra. We look forward to our musical future together with great confidence.” General Manager Martin Hoffmann: “As General Manager of the Berliner Philharmoniker Foundation I am delighted about the election and offer the orchestra and Kirill Petrenko my hearty congratulations.” Sir Simon Rattle: “I have admired Kirill Petrenko for years, and I am delighted that he will be my successor with this wonderful orchestra. I congratulate the Philharmoniker on making such a forwardlooking decision.”