The Feast of Lights was conceived in 1942 by Professor J. William Jones and first presented at the University of Redlands in 1947 as a production of the School of Music. In 1950, a second performance for the student body was added, and, by 1953, the Feast consisted of three performances.
In the 1968 Feast of Lights’ program, President George H. Armacost wrote:
"As long as I live I shall anticipate attending the Feast of Lights at the University of Redlands. This inspired service of worship has been an introduction to the Christmas Season for students, faculty and friends of the University of Redlands for more than twenty years. It is a tradition that I hope will endure as long as there is a University of Redlands."
In 1970 Professor Jeffrey H. Rickard became the Director of the Feast of Lights. The program notes for his first Feast of Lights began with the following statement:
"On Sunday evening, September 27, 1970, a new chapter in the pages of the celebrated history of the University of Redlands Choir was begun. It has been said that, at approximately the same time, a new era began for the entire University Community as well. It is always exciting to be involved in the beginning, to be part of the excitement and fervor which accompanies the realization of something new, something bold and daring. It is equally rewarding to feel the sensitivity and awareness, which reveres those traditions that have made the past great and enduring. With the first presentation of the 1970 Feast of Lights, one of the most loved of these traditions is continued."
In 2007, Professor Rickard celebrated the 60th anniversary of the Feast of Lights. After directing the Feast of Lights for 37 years, Rickard retired from the University of Redlands and passed the tradition to Director of Choral Activities, Dr. Nicholle Andrews.
Please join us to celebrate the 70th Feast of Lights.