Mikhail Petrenko

Engagements this season and beyond include Boris Godunov (title role) in Geneva, Leporello Don Giovanni at the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin and Orest Elektra at the Metropolitan Opera. Concert engagements include Shostakovich Symphony No. 13 with the Dresden Philharmonie and Bayerischer Runfunk Munich under Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Bluebeard’s Castle at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam.

© Valery Belobeev


Mikhail Petrenko, is one the most sought after basses in the world. His many recordings include Die Walküre conducted by Gergiev released on the Mariinsky Label and Gounod’s Romeo et Juliette conducted by Yannick Nezet-Seguin released on Deutsche Grammophon. He added a recording of Rachmaninov’s The Bells with the Berliner Philarmoniker to his discography conducted by Sir Simon Rattle, released on EMI and also features as Leporello in the film version of Don Giovanni, (Kasper Holten’s ‘Juan’).



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    Label: Warner Classics

    Release Date: 26 Aug 13

    Conductor: Simon Rattle

    Soprano: Luba Orgonasova,
    Tenor: Dmytro Popov
    Bass: Mikhail Petrenko

    Rundfunkchor Berlin
    Berliner Philharmoniker

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    WAGNER Die Walküre

    Label: Mariinsky Label

    Release Date: 31 Oct 12

    Conductor: Valery Gergiev

    Mariinsky Orchestra
    Sieglinde: Anja Kampe
    Siegmund: Jonas Kaufmann
    Wotan: René Pape
    Brünnhilde: Nina Stemme
    Hunding: Mikhail Petrenko
    Fricka: Ekaterina Gubanova

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    MOZART Don Giovanni

    Label: Axiom Films

    Release Date: 01 Oct 12

    Copenhagen: Lars Ulrik Mortensen
    Director: Kasper Holten

    Christopher Maltman
    Mikhail Petrenko
    Elizabeth Futral
    Maria Bengtsson
    Katija Dragojevic

    Concerto Copenhagen

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    TCHAIKOVSKY Eugene Onegin

    Label: Opus Arte

    Release Date: 01 Aug 12

    Conductor: Mariss Jansons
    Director: Stefan Herheim

    Eugene Onegin: Bo Skovhus
    Tatyana: Krassimira Stoyanova
    Lensky: Andrei Dunaev
    Prince Gremin: Mikhail Petrenko
    Olga: Elena Maximova
    Larina: Olga Savona
    Filipyevna: Nina Romanova
    A Company Commander: Peter Arink
    Zaretsky: Roger Smeets
    Triquet: Guy de Mey

    Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam
    Chorus of De Nederlandse Opera

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    GOUNOD Romeo et Juliette

    Label: Deutsche Grammophon

    Release Date: 10 Mar 09

    Conductor: Yannick Nezet-Seguin,

    Mikhail Petrenko
    Russel Braun
    Cora Burggraaf
    Falk Struckmann

    Mozarteum Orchester Salzburg

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    02 Mar 18 Strauss Elektra
    Metropolitan Opera Company

    “… the excellent singing and characterization of bass Mikhail Petrenko as Orest. (…) Petrenko’s Orest was calm, stately, and sinister, and he expressed a closeness to Elektra that, through unadorned gestures, showed the quasi-incestful love between the two that Hofmaansthal penned and Strauss scored.”

    New York Classical Review, Friday 2 March 2018

    “As Orest, Mikhail Petrenko sounded even more authoritative than before…”

    John Rockwell, Financial Times, Monday 5 March 2018

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    27 Oct 17 VERDI Nabucco
    Teatro alla Scala

    “Still, there was no repressing the deep, bronze voice of Mikhail Petrenko as Zaccaria, who railed mightily in “Come notte a sol fulgente” amid roars from the chorus – on powerful, snappy form throughout.”
    James Imam, Bach Track, 27 October 2017

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    23 Feb 17 PROKOFIEV Ivan the Terrible
    Chicago Symphony Centre

    “Luxury casting brought the rich-toned Russian bass Mikhail Petrenko for the choral-orchestral song of Fyodor Basmanov and the Oprichniki.”
    John von Rhein, Chicago Tribune, 24 February 2017

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    11 Jan 17 GOUNOD Roméo et Juliette
    Metropolitan Opera Company

    “…Mikhail Petrenko’s Frère Laurent was both gentle and ominous.”
    Robert Levine, Bach Track, 5 January 2017

    “The formidable bass Mikhail Petrenko conveyed the hearty good will of Frère Laurent, the friar who also subscribes to dangerous potions.”
    Anthony Tommasini, New York Times, 1 January 2017

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    05 Dec 16 STRAUSS Salome
    Metropolitan Opera Company

    “Mikhail Petrenko brought a strong, woody bass in his cameo as the First Nazarene…”
    Eric C. Simpson, New York Clasical Review, 6 December 2016

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    14 Jul 16 WAGNER Die Walküre
    Festspielhaus Baden-Baden

    “Mikhail Petrenko must be admired for his flawless diction in German. You couldn’t detect his Russian accent at any point during his portrayal of Hunding, full of disdain and anger.”
    David Pinedo, Opera Today, 20 July 2016

    “Enfin, le Hunding de Mikhail Petrenko est un luxe que seules peuvent se permettre les grandes maisons, noir à souhait et d’une violence contenue glaçante.”
    Michel Thomé, Res Musica, 13 July 2016

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    08 Apr 16 BARTOK Bluebeard's Castle
    Severance Hall

    “The main attractions, of course, were the singers. Not just any artists will do in “Bluebeard,” but bass Mikhail Petrenko and soprano Katarina Dalayman were every bit up to the task, boasting not only the requisite fluency in Hungarian but also ample, mellifluous voices, chemistry, and comfort in choreography that had them crawling, jogging and even dancing lightly around the stage.”
    Zachary Lewis,, 8 April 2016

    “Mikhail Petrenko was on excellent form, often singing in a cooly understated way that enhanced Bluebeard’s mystery, but allowing his big, resonant voice to boom forth as needed.”
    George Loomis, Opera Magazine, July 2016

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    26 Feb 16 MOZART Le Nozze di Figaro
    Metropolitan Opera

    “The opera is known as The Marriage of Figaro, and the current revival of Richard Eyre’s heavy-handed, busy-busy production of 2014 features a nice, dapper baritone in the title role: Mikhail Petrenko”.
    Martin Bernheimer, Financial Times, 28 February 2016

    “As Figaro, Mikhail Petrenko delivered a far more relaxed performance as
    Figaro…During the famed Act 4 aria, “Aprite un po’quegli occhi,” he darkened his voice and added a snarl to the consonants, the
    anger and bitterness coming through passionately.”
    David Salazar, Latin Post, 11 March 2016

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    03 Oct 15 RACHMANINOV The Bells
    St David's Hall

    “…three fine soloists…Mikhail Petrenko, the…deep bass lent a final dark authenticity to the whole”.
    Rian Evans, The Guardian, 4 October 2015

    “The best was served at the end in “Mournful Iron Bells” where…there was Mikhail Petrenko’s sonorous bass – a voice so cavernous you could walk through it”.
    David Truslove, Bach Track, 4 October 2015

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    12 Sep 15 RACHMANINOV Rachmaninov Song Recital
    De Doelen

    “Zodra de bas inzette, bracht hij de luisteraar in een wereld van vocale perfectie. Zijn grote spanningsbogen, emotionele frasering en robuuste stem overtuigden gedurende zijn hele optreden. Daarbij creëerde hij met zijn enorme présence en zijn interactie met het publiek een intieme sfeer in de Jurriaanse Zaal van De Doelen in Rotterdam”.

    To read the full review, please see the Opera Magazine website.
    David Pinedo, Opera Magazine, 18 September 2015

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    29 Jan 15 BARTOK Bluebeard's Castle
    Metropolitan Opera

    “In Bartok’s grim two-character “Bluebeard’s Castle,” drawn from a blood-streaked fairy tale, the spouse-murdering title character indulges his curious wife Judith’s desire to see every room in his haunt. No good comes of it. But performances by German soprano Nadja Michael, as Judith, and Russian bass Mikhail Petrenko as her Bluebeard are very good.”

    Joe Dziemianowicz, New York Daily News, 30 January 2015

    “Gergiev made it brood with primitive pain, and the protagonists, Nadja Michael (German) and Mikhail Petrenko (Russian), exuded extrovert passion, misery and menace, as needed.”
    Martin Bernheimer, Financial Times, 1 February 2015

    “Mikhail Petrenko is really scary as Bluebeard and sings the role with great confidence.”
    Wilborn Hampton, Huffington Post, 30 January 2015

    “Bartòk’s profoundly pessimistic Bluebeard’s Castle is a portrait of a sado-masochistic relationship far more disturbingly intense and erotic than anything E L James has punily imagined. Trelinski presents it in the context of a nightmare landscape of illusions and visions, haunted by the compelling presences of Nadja Michael and Mikhail Petrenko.”
    Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph, 15 February 2015

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    13 Nov 14 WAGNER Götterdämmerung
    Hippodrome Theatre, Birmingham

    “They were led by Hagen who stood on a level above them, with Mikhail Petrenko proving tremendous at commanding and manipulating everyone around him.”
    Sam Smith, Music OMH, 13 November 2014

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    03 Nov 14 MUSSORGSKY Boris Godunov
    Barbican Centre

    “There were phenomenal performances from both Mikhail Kazakov, in the title role, and Mikhail Petrenko as his unlikely nemesis, the monk Pimen. Petrenko sang Pimen quite beautifully, with gravelly depth and glorious lyricism.”

    David Karlin, Bachtrack, 4 November 2014

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    13 May 14 GOUNOD Faust
    Netherlands Opera

    “Also essaying his role for the first time is the accomplished Russian bass Mikhail Petrenko as Méphistophélès, whose cavalier initial words, “Me voici!,” forecast a verbally dexterous performance that is backed by a firm voice.”

    George Loomis, New York Times, 13 May 2014

    “Lascio per ultimo il Mefistofele di Mikhail Petrenko, il quale crea un personaggio di statura gigantesca. Il basso russo si dimostra cantante di vaglia e interprete dal carisma magnetico: il suo Mefistofele è di volta in volta arguto e volgare, arrogante e mellifluo, rozzo e aristocratico e non si può che rimanerne conquistati (in fondo, fra tutti è proprio questo il personaggio meno stereotipato e forse più umano della vicenda) tanto che, come direbbe Eduardo, alla sua uscita al proscenio se ne cade o’ teatro.”

    Edoardo Saccenti, Opera Click, 22 May 2014

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    06 Feb 14 BORODIN Prince Igor
    Metropolitan Opera

    “Mikhail Petrenko staggered lustily as nasty Galitsky”
    Martin Bernheimer, Financial Times, 9 February 2014

    “Igor has entrusted his wife and his city to the care of his brother-in-law, Prince Galitsky, a coarse cad, who schemes to take power while Igor is captive. The feisty Russian bass Mikhail Petrenko is a sneering, prickly Galitsky, exhorting his followers into frenzied drunken revels that jibe with the pummeling rhythms of the music.”
    Anthony Tommasini, New York Times, 7 February 2014

    “One of those voices belonged to Mikhail Petrenko, playing Igor’s brother-in-law Galitsky. He delivered his signature aria with vocal ease, but brought in a little grease and grit as he proclaimed he would live for the moment and engage in whatever debauchery he could drum up.”

    Eric C Simpson, New York Classical Review, 7 February 2014

    “Mikhail Petrenko’s snarling Galitzky rather outshone Stefan Kocán’s hoarse turn as Khan Konchak.”
    James Jorden, New York Observer, 2 October 2014

    “From the Mariinsky Theater came tenor Sergei Semishkur, as a clear-voiced Vladimir, and bass Mikhail Petrenko, who sang and played the lascivious, cynical, power-hungry Prince Galitsky to the hilt.”
    Raymond Stults, The Moscow Times, 20 February 2014 

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    28 Jul 13 WAGNER BBC Proms, Gotterdamerung
    Royal Albert Hall

    “He was a presence, though, and manifested his evil intent through grotesque distortions of key words, stretching and curling vowels into malevolent snarls.”
    Edward Seckerson, The Arts Desk, 29 July 2013

    “Anna Samuil’s Gutrune loved the hero in admiring, cheer-leader terms, although one felt she might have responded as easily to the sleazy charm of Siegfried’s nemesis Hagen, sung with testosterone-rich gruffness by Mikhail Petrenko.”
    Rick Jones, The Independent, 29 July 2013

    “…Mikhail Petrenko nevertheless conveyed the super-subtle malevolence of Alberich’s son…”
    George Hall, The Guardian, 29 July 2013

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    12 Nov 10 MUSSORGSKY Boris Godunov
    Metropolitan Opera, New York

    “For vocal beauty, top honours go to Mikhal Petrenko who was a marvelous Pimen, the wise monk who chronicled all that unfolded before him. He has a gorgeous deep, dark rolling bass. He also has excellent technique and fine dramatic skills. This is the third role I have seen him assume in New York and he is superb in everything he does. I look forward, one day, to hearing him as Boris…”, November 2010

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    01 Nov 09 RACHMANINOV The Bells
    San Francisco Symphony Orchestra

    “Petrenko reminded us of why we love Russian Basses. When that rich, reverberating tone rises from the depths, then pours forth to fill the auditorium, it is difficult not to feel a certain thrill.”
    Bay Area Reporter, November 2009

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    01 Sep 09 VERDI Requiem
    Swedish Radio Orchestra/Harding

    “Even more impressive was Michail Petrenko, the possessor of a magnificent bass voice but first and foremost he was restrained and responsive to the text, singing Confutatis with lyrical warmth…”
    Göran Forsling, musicweb international

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    01 Feb 09 VERDI Rigoletto
    Metropolitan Opera, New York

    “…Aside from Gagnidze, the other star of the evening was Mikhail Petrenko as Sparafucile, the knife-wielding assassin. When last seen in New York in November, he sang the part of the cook in a concert performance of Prokofiev’s ‘The Love for Three Oranges’ conducted by Valery Gergiev. In that performance, Petrenko’s deadly weapon was not a knife but a giant ladel! Here he was evil incarnate, with his gleaming bass voice seemingly rising out of the depths of his soul…”, February 2009



BEETHOVEN Fidelio (Rocco)
BARTOK Bluebeards’s castle
BELLINI Norma (Oroveso)
BERLIOZ Romeo et Juliet (Frère Laurent)
BERLIOZ La Damnation de Faust
BORODIN Prince Igor (Prince Galitsky)
GLINKA Ruslan and Lyudmila
MOZART Die Zauberflöte (Sarastro)
MOZART Don Giovanni (Leporello/Don Giovanni)
MOZART Le nozze di Figaro (Figaro)
MUSSORGSKY Boris Godunov (Boris/Pimen/Varlaam)
PUCCINI Turandot (Timur)
ROSSINI Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Basilio)
TCHAIKOVSKY Eugene Onegin (Gremin)
VERDI Don Carlo (Filippo)
VERDI Aida (Ramfis)
VERDI Nabucco (Zaccaria)
VERDI Simon Boccanegra (Fiesco)
VERDI Ernani (De Silva)
VERDI Il Trovatore (Ferrando)
WAGNER Die Walküre (Hunding)
WAGNER Götterdämmerung (Hagen)
WAGNER Die Walkure (Wotan)
WAGNER Rheingold (Wotan)
WAGNER Lohengrin (Heinrich)


BACH B Minor Mass
BEETHOVEN Symphony No.9
BEETHOVEN Missa Solemnis
DVORAK Stabat Mater
JANACEK Glagolitic Mass
MOZART Requiem
MOZART Coronation Mass
MUSSORGSKY Songs and Dances of Death
ROSSINI Petite Messe Solennelle
ROSSINI Stabat Mater
SHOSTAKOVICH Symphonies No. 13 & No. 14
SHOSTAKOVICH Suite on verses of Michelangelo
VERDI Requiem


Click here to read Jennifer Melick interview Mikhail for Opera News as he takes on Prince Galitsky in the Met’s new Prince Igor.