Season opening concert in cooperation with Deutsche Bank

Kirill Petrenko conducts “Ein Heldenleben”

Kirill Petrenko (photo: Stephan Rabold)

A combative hero, begrudging adversaries and a loyal companion all appear in Richard Strauss’ tone poem Ein Heldenleben. The work, in which Strauss draws recognisable parallels to his own life, captivates with its sumptuous sonority. Kirill Petrenko opens the 2023/24 season with this work – and at the same time the thematic focus Heroes, which will explore the many manifestations of heroism. In addition, there are Max Reger’s Mozart variations, in which he combines a simple, touching theme of the First Viennese School composer with the opulent sound language of the late Romantic period.

Berliner Philharmoniker

Kirill Petrenko conductor

Max Reger

Variations and Fugue on a Theme by Mozart, op.132

Richard Strauss

Ein Heldenleben, op. 40

Dates and Tickets


Kirill Petrenko

Kirill Petrenko has been chief conductor and artistic director of the Berliner Philharmoniker since the 2019/20 season. Born in Omsk in Siberia, he received his training first in his home town and later in Austria. He established his conducting career in opera with positions at the Meininger Theater and the Komische Oper Berlin. From 2013 to 2020, Kirill Petrenko was general music director of Bayerische Staatsoper. He has also made guest appearances at the world’s leading opera houses, including Wiener Staatsoper, Covent Garden in London, the Opéra national in Paris, the Metropolitan Opera in New York and at the Bayreuth Festival. Moreover, he has conducted the major international symphony orchestras – in Vienna, Munich, Dresden, Paris, Amsterdam, London, Rome, Chicago, Cleveland and Israel. Since his debut in 2006, a variety of programmatic themes have emerged in his work together with the Berliner Philharmoniker. These include work on the orchestra’s core Classical-Romantic repertoire, most notably with Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony when he took up his post. Unjustly forgotten composers such as Josef Suk and Erich Wolfgang Korngold are another of Kirill Petrenko’s interests. Russian works are also highlighted, with performances of Tchaikovsky’s operas Mazeppa, Iolanta and The Queen of Spades attracting particular attention recently.

Season’s focus

This season we are looking at "Heroes" and whether we still need them.