Russian to the rescue


Vasily Petrenko 

Liverpool, as its footballers do when all seems lost, threw caution to the winds and struck lucky. Two years ago it took on a Russian conductor of 29 years old and no prior form. Since then Vasily Petrenko has set the town alight. His concerts are electrifying, the audience age has dropped by two decades and some of the new string players look barely out of school. Attendances are up 40 percent since he arrived.

When he walks down Hope Street, it’s all ‘Hiya, Vasily,’ and ‘how’s it going at the Phil, mate?’ If Liverpool FC get drawn against St Petersburg, as they did last season, sports editors call him for expert comment. He plays five-a-side with his musicians, is gregarious, softly-spoken and down to earth — in short, he’s the biggest Russian hit on Merseyside since Letter to Brezhnev and vodka mixers.

The quote is from this article by Norman Lebrecht. Vasily Petrenko certainly sounds like some bloke, and a bit of a miracle worker in this instance. I wonder will we see him here soon with the NSOI?

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