BERLIN – Norway’s women conductors voiced outrage after the Russian chief conductor of the Oslo Philharmonic was quoted saying orchestras react better to men than to women.
Vasily Petrenko told the Aftenposten newspaper that orchestras react better to men, because men have less sexual energy and can focus more on the music while women on the podium could be distracting.
Women often find it hard to be as devoted to the job as is necessary once they have children, Petrenko told the newspaper.
Conductor Halldis Roenning said she found Petrenko’s comments ridiculous and totally unreasonable, Aftenposten reported. Conductor Cathrine Winnes Trevino called the views antiquated and unacceptable.
The 37-year-old Petrenko later said in a post on the orchestra’s website that he was talking about the situation for female conductors in Russia.