JULY 8th – The Future of Nuclear Weapons in New Mexico
Doctor Atomic: the History and Future of Nuclear Weapons in New Mexico with Peter Sellars, Dr. Ernest Moniz, and Sam Donaldson.


A partnership between The Santa Fe Opera and Creative Santa Fe, The Future of Nuclear Weapons in New Mexico delved into the complex history of nuclear weapons in our state through a discussion of the opera Doctor Atomic.  Featuring internationally acclaimed director Peter Sellars; Dr. Ernest Moniz; CEO of Nuclear Threat Initiative and former Secretary of Energy; Emily Johnson, Choreographer of Doctor Atomic; and moderated by television journalist Sam Donaldson, this dialogue explored the role of the arts in catalyzing change — bringing to light what has previously been classified, untold, and unseen in our nuclear history.

Over the past few months, Peter Sellars has been working with poetry students from the Native American Community Academy under the direction of Katherine Paige and Jessica Lopez and music students from the Santa Fe Indian School under the direction of Michael Begay, Arlene Huber, and Raven Chacon. The event opened with poetry and musical performances from these students before a sold-out audience at the historic Lensic Theater.

First performed in 2005, Doctor Atomic reunited composer John Adams with librettist/stage director Peter Sellars, whose earlier collaborations include Nixon in China and The Death of Klinghoffer. This new production, staged by Sellars, also marks the first John Adams work to be performed by The Santa Fe Opera.

Lead partner for this event:

This is event is part of the Santa Fe Opera’s 2018 TECH AND THE WEST series.


"Fabulous event, very stimulating and relatable dialogue, Bravo to all who made this happen"
"One of the very best events I have ever attended in 24 years here in Santa Fe !! Thank you very much!!"
-Eslee Kessler
"Thank you for the phenomenal event yesterday.
It touched my soul, my music, my theater, my wars, and my lives."