Born in Toronto, Jurgen Petrenko has Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the University of Toronto, studying organ with Douglas Bodle and John Tuttle, and conducting with Victor Feldbrill. For almost 18 years he worked for CBC Radio Music, as producer of programs including Choral Concert, Saturday Afternoon at the Opera, the Opera Quiz, Critic’s Choice, Take Five, and most recently as executive producer of Music and Company. He has also presented over 400 weekly “Organ Thursday” features.
Jurgen is the co-founder and artistic director of the 100-voice Toronto Classical Singers, and has conducted dozens of major choral/orchestral works. He has adjudicated for the University of Toronto, the Elora Festival Young Performers’ Competition, and the CBC Choral Competition, and teaches a seminar on oratorio performance for graduate voice majors at the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. He is also in demand as an organ accompanist, and has recorded a number of CDs with choirs conducted by Noel Edison. Jurgen can be heard weekly as the titular organist of St. John’s Anglican Church in Elora, Ontario, and served as accompanist for that choir’s 2005 residences in St. Paul’s Cathedral, London, St George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle, and Canterbury Cathedral. Jurgen was the General Manager of the prestigious Elora Festival from 2008-2012.
Jurgen is an accomplished sailor, and is proud to have earned his black belt in karate. He enjoys cooking, fine wines, computer games, Victorian novels, and working on his farm near Elora, where he lives with his wife Emily, their dog, and three horses.