Berlin Philharmonic meets its next music director

Berlin Philharmonic meets its next music director


norman lebrecht

March 20, 2017

For the first time since his election two years ago, Kirill Petrenko will conduct the Berliners this week.

The programme: Mozart’s Haffner symphony, Tchaikovky’s Pathétique and John Adams The Wound-Dresser.


  • Peter says:

    “Guten Morgen, my name is Kirill Petrenko, I remember some of your faces, you were so kind to ask me to be your next chief conductor after the other two front runners were not able to find a majority. Nice to meet you again finally.”

  • Sue says:

    Boring program!!

  • hans van der zanden says:

    His first appearance in Berlin included Rachmaninov 2, a favourite of mine (to me the most romantic of all symphonies). I happened to be there, and it was a great performance, leider not recorded for the digital hall. Next performance included Elgar 2, this time with the digital concert hall. I like the opening before the public noise settled – suits this music vert well. I watched the recording a dozen times or so, wonderful, you feel the intense connection – zusammenschmelzung – between conductor and orchestra – great conductor. Looking forward with great expectation to attend the digital concert hall coming thursday – don’t understand the boring remark at all…..hear that the Berliners are quite exited!!

    • Peter Freeman says:

      That sort of implies that they will be walking out of the concert, Hans. Of course, you mean excited!

    • Stefan Treddel says:

      This was not his first appearance in Berlin! He was music director of our Komische Oper from 2002 to 2007 and conducted many great concerts with it’s orchestra.

  • Brian says:

    It’s hard to believe Berlin would hire a conductor with so little public relations savvy in 2017 (or 2015, when he was announced). At a time when classical music needs charismatic figures to sell the artform to newcomers, I’m not sure I see it in him. Maybe he’ll surprise us yet.

    • M2N2K says:

      Shame on them for making the quality of musicianship a priority!

      • David says:

        Quite. The blunder of not consulting Brian before choosing ANYONE
        is too heartbreaking. Such infantile folly. So unprofessional. One could weep for what might have been.

    • MacroV says:

      I have a very limited impression: The Digital Concert Hall showed him conducting the Bavarian State Orchestra in Symphonia Domestica last fall. It was incredible. The richness and quality of the performance were unforgettable. Of course it has long been a great orchestra and they were playing a composer they know well, but I have to give Petrenko some credit. I’ll miss Sir Simon, who I think has been a great leader despite his detractors on SD. But Petrenko seems to be a really good musician. The Philharmoniker can handle the rest.