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Harold Pinter

At last, Peter Sellars will play at the Met

At last, Peter Sellars will play at the Met

Watching Peter Sellars rehearse is to observe a man possessed. Last week at the Metropolitan Opera House, L.A.'s reknowned theater director was fine-tuning "Nixon in China," which opens Wednesday. The new production of the John Adams opera, about the pre-Watergate president's historic meeting with Chairman Mao Zedong in 1972, will mark, at long last, Sellars' debut at the Met. It will be broadcast live in movie theaters worldwide Feb. 12.

Working on a scene in which Premier Chou en-Lai greets the Nixons in the Great Hall of the People, an ornate banquet room, Sellars raced across the...