Kirill Petrenko (photo: Monika Rittershaus)

Karajan Academy

Charity concert: 50 years of the Karajan Academy

The Karajan Academy celebrates its 50-year history with an anniversary concert given by the scholarship holders together with members of the Berliner Philharmoniker – all graduates of the Academy. The programme ranges from the First Viennese School to New music: conducting scholarship holder Nodoka Okisawa opens the programme with Mozart’s “Linz” Symphony. Kirill Petrenko conducts Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony, plus the world premiere of a cello concerto by Donghoon Shin, winner of the 2022 Claudio Abbado Composition Prize. The soloist is former academy member and Philharmoniker principal cellist Bruno Delepelaire. The earnings generated by this concert will be donated to the Karajan Academy's work with young musicians.

Karajan Academy of the Berliner Philharmoniker

Nodoka Okisawa conductor

Kirill Petrenko conductor

Bruno Delepelaire cello

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Symphony No. 36 in C major, K. 425 “Linz”

Nodoka Okisawa conductor

Donghoon Shin

Nachtergebung. Concerto for Cello and Orchestra, commissioned by the Karajan Academy of the Berliner Philharmoniker, funded by the Ernst von Siemens Musikstiftung

Kirill Petrenko conductor , Bruno Delepelaire cello

Ludwig van Beethoven

Symphony No. 5 in C minor, op. 67

Kirill Petrenko conductor

Dates and Tickets


Kirill Petrenko

Since the 2019/20 season, Kirill Petrenko has been chief conductor and artistic director of the Berliner Philharmoniker. He received his training first in Russia, then in Austria. The international music world first became aware of him when he premiered Wagner’s Ring of the Nibelung at the Meiningen Theater in 2001, directed by Christine Mielitz and designed by Alfred Hrdlicka, performed on four consecutive days. He conducted the cycle for the second time twelve years later at the Bayreuth Festival. At the same time, Kirill Petrenko took up his post as general music director of Bayerische Staatsoper, his third leading position at an opera house after Meiningen and the Komische Oper Berlin. He also made guest appearances at the world’s top opera houses (from the Wiener Staatsoper, Covent Garden in London and the Opéra National in Paris to the Metropolitan Opera in New York) as well as with the great international symphony orchestras – in Vienna, Munich, Dresden, Paris, Amsterdam, London, Rome, Chicago, Cleveland and Israel. He made his debut with the Berliner Philharmoniker in 2006. Kirill Petrenko also appears with the Berliner Philharmoniker outside of Berlin – on tour and of course in the Digital Concert Hall. Selected performances are also available as recordings; most recently released was an edition with symphonic works by Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Franz Schmidt and Rudi Stephan.

Nodoka Okisawa

Nodoka Okisawa played piano, violoncello and oboe before training as a conductor at the Tokyo University of the Arts and the Hanns Eisler Academy of Music in Berlin. Born in 1987 in Aomori, Japan, the Berlin native attended master classes with Kurt Masur as well as Neeme and Paavo Järvi. In 2018, she won the Tokyo International Music Competition for Conducting, one of the most important international conducting competitions, before being awarded the “Grand Prix” as well as the Orchestra and Audience Prize at the renowned Concours international de jeunes chefs d'orchestre in Besançon the following year. A momentous event, as Okisawa subsequently received “the wonderful opportunity” to “work with great musicians as a scholarship holder at the Karajan Academy and as assistant to Kirill Petrenko”. What she has been able to learn from him so far? “Something very important: I've learned that sincerity and openness move people much more than an autocratic style of leadership.” Nodoka Okisawa is a regular guest of renowned Japanese orchestras (including NHK Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa). In November 2021, she took the podium for the first time with the Munich Symphony Orchestra and the Orquesta de València; further debuts, including with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and the MDR Symphony Orchestra Leipzig, are already programmed. In March 2022, she conducted the Solidarity Concert for Ukraine with members of the Berlin Philharmonic at the invitation of German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier in Bellevue Palace.

Kirill Petrenko (photo: Monika Rittershaus)

Karajan-Akademie (photo: Peter Adamik)

Learning from the pros

Fifty Years of the Karajan Academy