PP NAP | Petr Popelka

Petr marks Schoenberg’s 150th anniversary with the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin


On 9 March, Petr returned to Berlin to lead the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester in a concert at the Philharmonie.

The concert opened with Schoenberg’s mighty Piano Concerto, Op.42, with Pierre-Laurent Aimard at the piano. The piece is a classic example of Schoenberg’s twelve-tone technique, with a fiendishly difficult solo part. You can listen to Petr discussing this ‘masterpiece’ on Klassik-Treffpunkt here (in German).

After the interval, the orchestra played Mahler’s Symphony No 1 in D major, the ‘Titan’: a romantic work which draws inspiration from diverse musical traditions.

Petr has a particular affinity with the music of Schoenberg, whose 150th anniversary is celebrated this year. In September he will open his first season as Chief Conductor of the Wiener Symphoniker with his Gurrelieder, a piece which Petr called “the greatest gift” to conduct.