Peter Hirsch was born in Cologne. After his studies he became assistent to M. Gielen at the Opera Frankfurt. From 1984-87 he was First Kapellmeister there. In this time he conducted the world première of H. Zender‘s first opera „Stephen Climax“. Among the many opera productions of those and the following years - a.o. in Vancouver; Welsh National Opera; Staatsoper unter den Linden, Berlin; Nedelandse Opera, Amsterdam (reconstruction of the original version of Berlioz‘ „Benvenuto Cellini“) - his collaboration with the director Jürgen Gosch led to exemplary and highly praised productions of Mozart‘s „Figaro“ (Opera Frankfurt) and „Cosi fan tutte“ (Scottish Opera).
An important land-mark has been the encounter, co-operation and friendship with Luigi Nono - Milano 1985: world première of „Prometeo“, which Hirsch conducted alternately with C.Abbado; 1986: world première of „Risonanze Erranti“ in Cologne. Since then Hirsch has constantly been promoting the works of Nono - cf. his editing and première of the posthumous fragment „Julius Fucik“ in 2006 with Munich Philharmonic. He has premiered numerous works, besides Nono those by B. A. Zimmermann, H. Lachenmann, H. Zender, G.-F. Haas, M. André a.o. He has been regular guest a.o. with BBC Scottish and Northern Ireland, Bournemouth Symphony, Resdentie Orkest, The Hague, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestre Philharmonique de Luxembourg, Orchestre National de Belgique Brussels, Philharmonia Orchestra London, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra, almost all German Radio Orchestras, Berne Symphony, Camerata Salzburg, Munich Philharmonic, Deutsche Oper am Rhein Düsseldorf as well as Klangforum Vienna, Ensemble modern, Collegium Zurich, Ensemble Contrechamps, Geneva. His discography includes works by Schubert, Brahms, Bruckner, Mahler, Janacek, Schoenberg, Berg, Dallapiccola, B. A. Zimmermann and L.Nono.