Peter Bassett is a writer, speaker and broadcaster on opera, particularly the works of Richard Wagner. He was closely involved with both the 1998 and 2004 South Australian productions of Der Ring des Nibelungen in Adelaide. He was also involved with the 2001 Australian premiere of Parsifal, the 2006 West Australian Opera's Tristan und Isolde 2009 State Opera of South Australia's Der fliegende Holländer. Peter also regularly writes program notes for Australian and New Zealand orchestras and opera companies.
A lawyer and diplomat by training, Peter served for twenty years in the Australian Diplomatic Service in embassies in East and West Europe, Asia and the Pacific, and was Deputy Legal Adviser in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Canberra until 1992. He was, for a further decade, chief of staff to two Governors of South Australia.
Bassett is currently writing a thesis about the establishment of a Wagner performing tradition in Adelaide between the years of 1995-2005. During the Melbourne Ring Festival, Peter gave a talk on the Buddhist and Hindu influences in Wagner's stage works. A similar talk was presented during the San Francisco Opera 2011 Ring Festival.