Händel-Festspiele Göttingen Names New Artistic Director Starting In 2021-22

By David Salazar

George Petrou will be the new Artistic Director of the Händel-Festspiele Göttingen starting during the 2021-22 Festival.

A baroque specialist, he was the preferred choice by Supervisory Board.

Petrou initially started his career as a pianist but eventually became a conductor. He has been the Artistic Director of the Armonia Atenea and was also appointed a member of the Royal Academy of Music in London. He was also named Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the government of France.

Throughout 2018-19, he is set to take on Handel’s “Messiah” in Canada before conducting a new production of “Serse” at the Handel Festival Karlsruhe in 2019. He will also conduct performances of “La Traviata” and “La Donna del Lago” in Europe this season.

Petrou will succeed Laurence Cummings who was delighted by the choice.

“I am absolutely delighted about the appointment and am certain that the Festival and orchestra are in the best of hands under his direction,” Cummings stated in a press release. “I am looking forward to working closely together with George Petrou to ensure a smooth transition.”

“I have long been aware of the Göttingen International Handel Festival and it is a great honor for me to be able to lead this tradition-steeped and internationally-renowned Baroque Festival,” Petrou noted. “I hope I am able to contribute to the further development of the Festival and to create unforgettable performances of Handel’s music.”