Born Nov. 23, 1885, in the village of Ceikiniai; died Jan. 17, 1968, in Vilnius. Soviet Lithuanian dramatic lyric tenor; music figure. People’s Artist of the USSR (1950). Professor at the Conservatory of the Lithuanian SSR from 1951.
The son of an organist, Petrauskas was the brother of M. Petrauskas, under whose supervision he received his early musical training. In 1911 he graduated from the St. Petersburg Conservatory, where he studied singing with S. I. Gabel’. He spent some time in prison for participating in the revolutionary events of 1905. In 1906 he made his debut as a singer in Vilnius in the opera Birutė by M. Petrauskas. From 1911 to 1920 he was a soloist at Petrograd’s Mariinskii Theater under the stage name Piotrovskii.
Petrauskas was one of the founders of the national Lithuanian opera theater in Kaunas, where he was a soloist until 1958; today the theater is known as the Lithuanian Theater of Opera and Ballet. In 1940 he created the role of Grigorii in Dzerzhinskii’s The Quiet Don for the Lithuanian stage. One of his best roles was that of the False Dmitrii in Boris Godunov (State Prize of the USSR, 1951). From 1925 to 1928 he toured foreign countries with F. I. Chaliapin.
Petrauskas was a deputy to the second and fourth convocations of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR. He was awarded the Order of Lenin, the Order of the Red Banner of Labor, and a medal.