The former head of English National Opera (1985-93) and Bavarian State Opera (1993-2006) turns 70 today, October 14.
Peter is a fount of creative enthusiasm, operatic minutiae and psychological insights. As chief executive of two large metropolitan opera houses, he was not just an adroit administrator and manager of talent, he was an exemplary figure who inspired others to follow in his path, and steered them to the next vacancy.
He is also a medical miracle, having survived enough cancer to kill ten men. On retirement, he loaded a rucksack on his back and set out to walk across Europe north to south, and east to west.
Singers the world over, this world and the next, will be fondly serenading him today.