Peter Sellars has gained international renown for his groundbreaking and transformative interpretations of artistic masterpieces and for collaborative projects with an extraordinary range of creative artists. He has staged operas at the Canadian Opera Company, Dutch National Opera, English National Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Opéra National de Paris, and the Salzburg Festival, among others.
He has collaborated on the creation of many works with composer John Adams, including Nixon in China, The Death of Klinghoffer, El Niño, Doctor Atomic, A Flowering Tree, and The Gospel According to the Other Mary. Inspired by the compositions of Kaija Saariaho, Sellars has guided the creation of productions of her work that have expanded the repertoire of modern opera.
Recent projects include an acclaimed production of La Clemenza di Tito at the 2017 Salzburg Festival, a concert staging of The Cunning Little Vixen with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, and the premiere of the latest Adams/Sellars collaboration, Girls of the Golden West, at San Francisco Opera. This summer Sellars will create a new production of Doctor Atomic for the Santa Fe Opera.
Sellars has led several major arts festivals, including the 1990 and 1993 Los Angeles Festivals and the 2002 Adelaide Arts Festival. In 2006 he was Artistic Director of New Crowned Hope, a month-long festival in Vienna for which he invited artists from diverse cultural backgrounds to create new work in the fields of music, theater, dance, film, the visual arts and architecture for the celebration of Mozart’s 250th birth anniversary. He served as the Music Director of the 2016 Ojai Music Festival.
He is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of World Arts and Cultures at UCLA, a resident curator of the Telluride Film Festival, and was a Mentor for the Rolex Arts Initiative. Sellars is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, the Erasmus Prize for contributions to European culture, the Gish Prize, and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. In 2014 he was awarded the prestigious Polar Music Prize and named Artist of the Year by Musical America.