Richards Center for the Arts at
Palm Springs High School
2248 Ramon Road
Palm Springs, CA 92264
THE RICHARDS CENTER
This historic stage of The Richards Center for the Arts (formerly the Palm Springs High School Auditorium ) has hosted music superstars like Arthur Rubenstein and Van Cliburn, Shakespearean actor Dame May Anderson, and political luminaries Eleanor Roosevelt and President Gerald Ford. The Los Angeles Philharmonic has played annual symphony series here. And Frank Sinatra and Barry Manilow have brought their contemporary songs stylings here.
The Palm Springs High School Auditorium showcased these eminent talents when it was the only stage in the Coachella Valley -- before the McCallum or Annenberg theaters existed. And the stage also served as training ground for generations of young desert students of performing arts.
The auditorium was the original venue for the Palm Springs International Film Festival in 1988: with 1,100 seats the theater could accommodate almost any gathering. But what it did best was serve children, hosting band concerts, choir recitals, school drama clubs and annual community productions of "The Nutcracker."
Before the present Spanish Revival-style high school opened in 1938 (without the costly auditorium), local students had been bused to Banning for high school. The initial enrollment of 120 students quickly rose to 500 in 1954, and has ballooned to 23,581 in the Palm Springs Unified School District today.
The auditorium was added in 1958, and was then a
state-of-the-art facility designed by eminent local architect E. Stewart Williams. But with no improvements since, it was time to come out of the wings and update the facility: a new renovation was completed in 2016.
The Foundation for the Palm Springs Unified School District offers a slate of naming, sponsorship, and underwriting opportunities for this important community project. Click HERE for more details!