Vasily Petrenko was born in 1976 and began his music education at the Saint Petersburg Academic State Capella music school. He continued his studies at the Saint Petersburg Conservatory, and has participated in master classes with teachers such as Ilya Musin, Mariss Jansons, Yuri Temirkanov, and Esa-Pekka Salonen. From 1994 to 1997, Mr. Petrenko was resident conductor at the Saint Petersburg State Opera and Ballet Theatre (now the Mikhailovsky Theatre); he was appointed Principal Guest Conductor there this July. He was chief conductor of the State Academy Orchestra of Saint Petersburg from 2004 to 2007. In 2006, Mr. Petrenko became Principal Conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, a position he holds now; he is also Principal Conductor of the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain. Mr. Petrenko will become Chief Conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra in the 2013-14 season. He made his San Francisco Symphony debut in 2010, conducting works by Shostakovich and Grieg, and last appeared here in October 2011.
In recent seasons, Mr. Petrenko has made debuts with the London Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia, Russian National Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Orchestre National de France, and NHK Symphony Tokyo. Recent North American debuts include the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Philadelphia, Minnesota, Boston, Dallas, Baltimore, and Saint Louis symphony orchestras. Highlights of Mr. Petrenko’s 2011-12 season included debuts with the Czech Philharmonic, Vienna Symphony, Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin, and Orchestre de la Suisse Romande. His future engagements include return visits to the Philharmonia, Saint Petersburg Philharmonic, and Los Angeles Philharmonic; tours in Europe and the US with the Russian National Orchestra; and debuts with the Chicago Symphony and National Symphony Orchestra (Washington DC). Also an opera conductor, Mr. Petrenko made his debut in 2010 at the Glyndebourne Festival Opera (with Macbeth) and Opéra National de Paris (with Eugene Onegin); he now has more than thirty operas in his repertory. Mr. Petrenko has plans to make his debut at the Zurich Opera conducting Carmen.
Vasily Petrenko has made several recordings with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, including an album of Veniamin Fleishman’s Rothschild’s Violin and Shostakovich’s The Gamblers; Rachmaninoff’s Symphony No. 3 (winner of the 2012 ECHO Klassik award for Newcomer of the Year–Conductor), Symphonic Dances; and Isle of the Dead, and a disc of suites from Tchaikovsky’s ballets. Recent releases include Tchaikovsky’s Manfred Symphony (winner of the 2009 Gramophone award for Best Orchestral Recording); the Liszt Piano Concertos; and an ongoing Shostakovich recording cycle. He received the 2007 Gramophone award for Young Artist of the Year, was awarded honorary doctorates by the University of Liverpool and Liverpool Hope University in 2009, and won Male Artist of the Year at the 2010 Classical Brit Awards. Earlier this year, he received an honorary fellowship from the Liverpool John Moores University.