Bringing Live Theatre to McHenry County Since 1967

Press Release – September 2023

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For immediate release

Illinois Community Theater More Popular Than Ever

Chicagoland theater company Theatre 121 Sees 29% Increase in Ticket Sales with Record-Breaking Year

WOODSTOCK, IL – [September 21, 2023] – Local Illinois theater production company, Theatre 121, in partnership with the historic Woodstock Opera House, is thrilled to announce a surge in community engagement and ticket sales from its 2022 – 2023 theatrical season. The company witnessed a remarkable 29% increase in ticket sales year-over-year, solidifying Theatre 121’s role as a cultural, artistic cornerstone in the Woodstock, Crystal Lake, and greater McHenry County and Chicaoland region.

As reported in its annual membership meeting, Theatre 121, a 501c3 organization, highlighted several achievements from the previous season, including:

  • Over 10,500 theatergoers attended its productions of Cinderella, A Christmas Carol, Seussical, Murder on the Orient Express, and RENT
  • More than 450 ‘Comp Tickets’ were awarded, giving $10,800+ back to the McHenry County community
  • 26% audience growth was observed from Opening weekend to Closing weekend, a testament to the compelling word-of-mouth buzz generated by each performance
  • The 2 p.m. production of A Christmas Carol on Sunday, December 4, 2022, drew an audience of 396, surpassing the previous record set by Elf from the season prior
  • Matinees have proven 43% more popular than evening shows, with strong attendance from families during these performances
  • Sundays emerged as the best-selling day, with an average house size of 217

“We’re providing high-quality, professional-level theater experiences at an affordable cost for families and theater lovers in the Woodstock, Crystal Lake, and greater McHenry County region, and we couldn’t be prouder to see the tremendous showing of support from our community,” emphasized Elaine Cashmore, Theatre 121 Board President.

Theatre 121 Board Vice President, Jordan Rakittke, added, “Theatre 121 is an inclusive company providing a variety of artistic opportunities for actors, directors, choreographers, production crew, pit orchestra, and costumers in Chicagoland to showcase their talents to thousands of paying audiences in a historic theater.”

Nestled within the heart of the community, the Woodstock Opera House has hosted renowned personalities such as Orson Welles, Paul Newman, Tom Bosley, Betsy Palmer, Geraldine Page, and many more who performed on its stage during their formative years. Additionally, the Opera House achieved cinematic fame through its feature in the 1991 film, “Groundhog Day,” starring Bill Murray.

Theatre 121’s commitment to delivering exceptional entertainment experiences continues into the upcoming 2023 – 2024 theatrical season, featuring a lineup of four productions:

  • Puffs: 9 performances over two weekends, from October 6, 2023, to October 15, 2023.
  • White Christmas: 11 performances over 3 weekends, from November 17, 2023, to December 3, 2023.
  • Steel Magnolias: 9 performances over 3 weekends, from April 12, 2024, to April 28, 2024.
  • Sweeney Todd: 7 performances over 2 weekends, from June 21, 2024, to June 30, 2024.

In addition to its mainstage productions, Theatre 121 and the Woodstock Opera House have teamed up for a special fundraiser event on Saturday, September 23, 2023, featuring pieces presented by Judith Svalander School of Ballet and musical and acting performances by Theatre 121. The event is open to the public and tickets are available on the Woodstock Opera House website.

“We invite you to experience the magic of live theater on a historic stage for our 2023 – 2024 season, and to get involved as an actor, sponsor, advertiser, or member,” says Eric Thiegs, Theatre 121 Board of Directors, Community Connections.

Interested in show information, audition dates, partner/sponsor/advertising opportunities, membership, or purchasing tickets for Theatre 121 productions? Visit and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube!

About Theatre 121

Theatre 121 is an inclusive theater company for the McHenry County area, providing education, connections, and community through excellence in the arts since 1967. We strengthen the bonds of our community by drawing visitors to Woodstock and area businesses, developing skills both on and off the stage, and providing entertainment and a sense of community for all. Explore more at

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