Vasily Petrenko’s 2022-23 season includes Mahler’s ‘Symphony of a Thousand’ and major tours with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, debut concerts with the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and returns to the Oslo Philharmonic, Berlin Radio Symphony and Cleveland orchestras

Conductor closes season with Bavarian State Opera production of Boris Godunov

Orchestral blockbusters, beguiling symphonic rarities and two performances of Boris Godunov for the Munich Opera Festival stand among the highlights of Vasily Petrenko’s new season. The conductor is set to lead a second series of London concerts as Music Director of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and lead his players on tours of Eastern Europe, Spain, Germany, Japan and South Korea. His schedule also includes debut appearances with the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra and the Orchestra of the Palau de les Arts in Valencia and a run of return performances with, among others, the Oslo Philharmonic, the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Cleveland Orchestra and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

Journeys of Discovery provides the overarching theme of Petrenko’s concerts with the RPO in London. His programmes comprise works that confront such existential questions as ‘What is it to be human?’ and ‘What is our place in the world?’, concerns that helped shape so many great orchestral works. The series begins at the Royal Festival Hall on 2 October with Wagner’s rarely performed A Faust Overture, Grieg’s Piano Concerto (with Simon Trpčeski) and Strauss’s Also sprach Zarathustra, billed under the umbrella title of ‘Awakening’.

Mahler’s Symphony No.8, his so-called ‘Symphony of a Thousand’, is set to hold the Royal Albert Hall stage on 23 October, presented under the heading of ‘Redemption’. “Mahler Eight is very rarely performed, because of the number of performers it requires,” notes Vasily Petrenko. “Some 650 people will be involved – not quite a thousand but still a large number! I’m looking forward to performing it with the RPO and also Mahler’s Second and Third Symphonies later in the season (30 March & 27 April 2023).” Thanks to the rescheduling of projects postponed during the pandemic, the 2022-23 season includes a substantial touring programme for Petrenko and his London orchestra. Their forthcoming overseas itinerary includes concerts in Bratislava, Zagreb, Wrocław and Krakow (7-13 October); a 10-concert tour of Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, including performances in Munich, Frankfurt, Cologne and Antwerp (23 January-4 February); and a major tour of Asia (20-28 May).

“My way of programming is to create concert series that people might want to follow over several performances,” observes Vasily Petrenko. “That’s why there’s an overall theme for our London series. It’s an intense season for us at home and overseas. It shows that things are coming back to some sort of pre-pandemic life. Let’s hope the present political and economic turmoil returns to normality soon, too.”

The conductor’s season includes debut appearances with the Orchestra of the Palau de les Arts in Valencia (16 December) and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (January 2023). “I’ve been to Hong Kong with touring orchestras but this will be my first time with the local band,” he recalls. “I’m particularly excited to be working with this fine orchestra and that we will play Strauss’s Ein Heldenleben in one of our programmes.”

This autumn also sees Vasily Petrenko return to the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, which he served as Chief Conductor from 2013-20, and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra in his role as Conductor Laureate. He will perform Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony with both orchestras, coupling it with Nikolai Tcherepnin’s Prelude to La Princesse lointaine and Tchaikovsky’s Rococo Variations (with Pablo Ferrández as soloist) for his Oslo programme (27 October). “I’m looking forward to being back in Oslo again, especially so as this concert was postponed during the pandemic. La princesse lointaine,little known in the West, was one of the first Romantic pieces for symphony orchestra in the Russian repertoire. I’m trying to programme works by composers, such as Myaskovsky, Glière, Tcherepnin and so on, that deserve to be heard more often.”

Petrenko returns to the Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra with a thought-provoking combination of Mozart’s ‘Haffner’ Symphony, Alban Berg’s Seven Early Songs (with the acclaimed Australian soprano Siobhan Stagg as soloist) and the fantasy for large orchestra Die Seejungfrau (12 & 13 November). “Die Seejungfrau is one of my favourite works,” he notes. “It may be based on Hans Christian Andersen’s story The Little Mermaid, but it’s really about Zemlinsky’s heartbreak at the ending of his relationship with one of his students, Alma Schindler, who had fallen in love with Gustav Mahler and married him soon after. Zemlinsky associated himself with the mermaid who sacrificed her life for the sake of love.”

For his concerts with the Cleveland Orchestra Petrenko has programmed Elgar’s Cockaigne (In London Town) and Walton’s First Symphony together with Prokofiev’s Second Piano Concerto (1, 2 & 3 December). “I have discovered so much wonderful British music during my time in the UK and it’s one of my passions to bring it to other countries. I feel a duty to bring the beauties of British music to the world.” Other season highlights include an Easter concert with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra comprising Te Deum settings by Arvo Pärt and Bruckner (7, 9 April) and a return to the SWR Symphony Orchestra Stuttgart (17, 18 & 20 November) to perform Franz Schreker’s Vorspiel zu einem Drama, Berg’s Seven Early Songs (with Chen Reiss as soloist) and the original 1911 version of Stravinsky’s ballet Petrushka. “This will be my first time with them for about ten years,” he recalls. “I’m looking forward to working with the orchestra again, especially with one of several programmes I’m doing of works by Viennese composers or members of the Second Viennese School.”

As his season draws to a close, Vasily Petrenko will return to the Bavarian State Opera to conduct Boris Godunov as part of the Munich Opera Festival (4 & 6 July). The production, a revival of Calixto Bieito’s 2013 staging, returns to the original 1868-69 version of Mussorgsky’s score. Ildar Abdrazakov is set to sing the title-rolewith Daria Proszek as the tsar’s son Fyodor, Emily Pogorelc as Kseniya and Vitalij Kowaljow as Pimen. “This work, which is set in a time of troubles, offers so many insights into what it is to be human and the ways in which power corrupts,” the conductor comments. “I can’t wait to perform it in Munich with this fine cast.” – Facebook – Instagram 

Sunday 2 October 2022, 7.30pm

Royal Festival Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Simon Trpčeski piano | Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Wagner A Faust Overture
Grieg Piano Concerto
Strauss Also sprach Zarathustra


Friday 7 October Bratislava, Saturday 8 October Zagreb, Sunday 9 October Wroclaw, Monday 10 October Krakow, Thursday 11 October Bielsko-Biala, Wednesday 12 October Kaunas, Thursday 13 October 2022 Thessaloniki

Sunday 23 October 2022, 3pm

Royal Albert Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Sarah Wegener soprano | Jacquelyn Wagner soprano | Regula Mühlemann soprano | Jennifer Johnston mezzo-soprano | Claudia Huckle contralto | Vincent Wolfsteiner tenor | Michael Nagy baritone | Shenyang bass-baritone | Philharmonia Chorus | 
Bournemouth Symphony Chorus | City of London Choir | Schola Cantorum of The Cardinal Vaughan Memorial School | Tiffin Boys’ Choir | Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Mahler Symphony No.8 ‘Symphony of a Thousand’

Wednesday 26 & Thursday 27 October 2022, 7pm

Oslo Concert Hall

Vasily Petrenko conductor |Pablo Ferrández cello |Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra

Tcherepnin La princesse lointaine (27 October only)

Tchaikovsky Variations on a Rococo Theme (27 October only)

Tchaikovsky Manfred Symphony

Thursday 3 November 7.30pm & Sunday 6 November 2022 2.30pm

Liverpool Philharmonic Hall

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Alban Gerhardt cello | Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra

Rubinstein Cello Concerto No.2
Tchaikovsky Manfred Symphony

Mendelssohn Overture The Hebrides (Fingal’s Cave)
Haydn Cello Concerto in D
Tchaikovsky Manfred Symphony

Saturday 12 & Sunday 13 November 2022, 8pm

Philharmonie Berlin    

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Siobhan Stagg soprano | Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin

Mozart Symphony in D Major KV 385 ‘Haffner’

Berg Seven Early Songs

Zemlinsky Die Seejungfrau

Thursday 17, Friday 18 & Sunday 20 November 2022, 7pm

Beethovensaal Liederhalle, Stuttgart

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Chen Reiss soprano | SWR Symphonieorchester Stuttgart

Schreker Vorspiel zu einem Drama

Berg Seven Early Songs

Stravinsky Petrushka (1911 version)

Thursday 1 December 7.30pm, Friday 2 December 11am & Saturday 3 December 2022 8pm

Severance Music Center, Cleveland

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Behzod Abduraimov piano | Cleveland Orchestra

Elgar Cockaigne (In London Town)

Prokofiev Piano Concerto No.2 (except 2 December)

Walton Symphony No.1

Friday 16 December 2022, 7.30pm

Palau de les Arts, Valencia

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Roman Burdenko baritone | Orquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana

Tcherepnin Prelude from La princesse lointaine

Mussorgsky Songs and Dances of Death

Rachmaninov Symphony No.2


Monday 23 January Erlangen, Tuesday 24 January Munich, Wednesday 25 January Friedrichshafen, Thursday 26 January Hamburg, Friday 27 January Düsseldorf, Saturday 28 January Hannover, Monday 30 January Frankfurt, Tuesday 31 January Cologne, Saturday 4 February 2023 Antwerp

Wednesday 8 February 2023, 7.30pm

Royal Festival Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Javier Perianes piano | Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Prokofiev Romeo and Juliet (excerpts)
Ravel Piano Concerto in G
Wagner Tristan und Isolde: Prelude and Liebestod
Scriabin The Poem of Ecstasy

Friday 17 & Saturday 18 February 7.30pm, Sunday 19 February 2023 11.30am

Sala Sinfónica, Madrid

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Cuarteto Quiroga | Orquesta Nacional de España

Ligeti Lontano

Adams Absolute Jest, for string quartet and orchestra

Strauss Also sprach Zarathustra

Saturday 25 February 7pm & Sunday 26 February 2023 11am

L’Auditori Barcelona

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Heidi Melton soprano | Orquestra Simfònica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya

Strauss Divertimento, Op.86 (1941)

Strauss Four Last Songs

Strauss Also sprach Zarathustra

Friday 3 & Saturday 4 March 7.30pm, Sunday 5 March 2023 11am

Kulturpalast, Dresden

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Alice Coote alto | Dresdner Philharmonie

Dvorák The Aquarius (except 5 March)

Elgar Sea Pictures (except 5 March)

Zemlinsky Die Seejungfrau

Thursday 30 March 2023, 7.30pm

Royal Albert Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Elizabeth Watts soprano | Jennifer Johnston mezzo-soprano | Philharmonia Chorus Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Mahler Symphony No.2 ‘Resurrection’

Friday 7 April 2023 8.15pm TivoliVredenburg, Utrecht

Sunday 9 April 2023 11am Het Concertgebouw, Amsterdam

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Netherlands Radio Choir | Mané Galoyan soprano | Fleur Barron mezzo-soprano | Bekhzod Davronov tenor | Johannes Weisser bass-baritone | Radio Filharmonisch Orkest

Pärt Te Deum

Wagner Karfreitagszauber (from Parsifal, 7 April only)

Bruckner Te Deum

RPO TOUR 19 – 21 APRIL 2023

Wednesday 19 & Thursday 20 April Madrid, Friday 21 April 2023 Alicante

Sunday 23 April 2023, 7.30pm

Royal Festival Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor |Truls Mørk cello | Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Dukas The Sorcerer’s Apprentice

Elgar Cello Concerto

Tchaikovsky Manfred Symphony

Thursday 27 April 2023, 7.30pm

Royal Albert Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor |Hanna Hipp mezzo-soprano |Philharmonia Chorus Tiffin Boys’ Choir | Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Mahler Symphony No.3

Thursday 4 May 2023, 7.30pm

Liverpool Philharmonic Hall

Vasily Petrenko conductor |Adela Zaharia soprano | Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra

Bernd Richard Deutsch Phantasma (UK premiere)

Strauss Brentano Lieder (Six Songs)

Scriabin Symphony No.3 ‘The Divine Poem’

Wednesday 10 May 2023, 7.30pm

Royal Festival Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Arabella Steinbacher violin | Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Jennifer Higdon blue cathedral

Prokofiev Violin Concerto No.2

Berlioz Symphonie fantastique


Saturday 20 May 2023 Fukuoka, Sunday 21 May 2023 Osaka, Monday 22 May 2023 Tokyo, Tuesday 23 May 2023 Takasaki, Wednesday 24 May & Friday 26 May 2023 Tokyo, Saturday 27 May 2023 Nagoya, Sunday 28 May 2023 Tokorozawa

Wednesday 7 June 2023, 7.30pm

Royal Festival Hall, London

Vasily Petrenko conductor |Nobuyuki Tsujii piano | Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No.1

Shostakovich Symphony No.8

Thursday 15 & Friday 16 June 2023, 7.30pm

Sala Sinfónica, Valladolid

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Javier Comesaña violin | Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y León

Wagner The Flying Dutchman overture

Mendelssohn Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in E minor

Bartók Concerto for Orchestra

Saturday 24 June 2023, 8pm

Auditorio Alfredo Kraus, Las Palmas

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Orquesta Filarmonica de Gran Canaria

Rachmaninov Symphony No.3

Stravinsky Symphony for wind instruments

Respighi Ancient airs and dances, Suite No.2


Tuesday 4 July 7.30pm & Thursday 6 July 2023 7pm

Nationaltheater, Munich

Vasily Petrenko conductor | Calixto Bieito production | Ildar Abdrazakov Boris Godunow| Daria Proszek Fjodor | Emily Pogorelc Xenia| Christina Bock Xenias Amme | Maxim Paster Fürst Schuiskij| Sean Michael Plumb Andrej Schtschelkalow| Vitalij Kowaljow Pimen | Dmytro Popov Grigorij Otrepjew| Ryan Speedo Green Warlaam | Brenton Ryan Missail | Lindsay Ammann Schenkwirtin | Kevin Conners Gottesnarr | Roman Chabaranok Nikititsch | Granit Musliu Leibbojar | Thomas Mole Mitjucha| Bayerisches Staatsorchester Chorus, extra chorus and children’s chorus of the Bayerische Staatsoper

Mussorgsky Boris Godunov