Stoughton Opera House

381 E Main Street
Stoughton WI 53589
(608) 877-4400
(7353) Page Views


the historic Stoughton Opera House in downtown Stoughton, Wisconsin

Stoughton Opera House in Stoughton

Updated: 7/29/19 2:12am

8/17&19 Stoughton Chamber Music Festival

9/15 Tribute to Bill Malone
9/17 Edgar Knecht Trio
9/26 Lee Ann Womack
9/27 Carsie Blanton
9/28 Shook Twins, Nickel&Rose

10/3 The Accidentals
10/4 Madison Jazz Review feat. Barbacoa, Jon Hoel Trio, Gerri DiMaggio’s World Jazz Unit
10/5 Susan Werner
10/10 Emo Philips, Guy Weathersppon
10/12 Kaki King: The Neck is a Bridge to the Body
10/16 Michael Hecht Tribute to Jimmy Santiago Baca, Bill Camplin
10/17 Anaïs Mitchell, Rachel Ries Duo
10/18 Harry Manx
10/19 Iris Dement, Pieta Brown
10/23-24 Richard Thompson, Eliza Gilkyson
10/25 Pokey LaFarge (Solo)
10/26 Gina Chavez

11/1 Suzy Bogguss
11/2-3 Rhiannon Giddens, Francesco Turrisi
11/7 Livingston Taylor
11/8 Jena Friedman
11/9 The Flatlanders
11/13 Che Apalache
11/14 Tommy Castro & Tinsley Ellis
11/15-16 Steve Earle (Solo)
11/22 On A Winter’s Night

12/6 Joan Shelley


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Venue Description:

The Stoughton Opera House, originally called the City Auditorium, first opened on February 22, 1901. It is one of the largest second story theaters in the Midwest. For over 50 years, there was a wide variety of cultural experiences to be enjoyed within its walls including operas, musical productions, minstrel, theater and vaudeville shows, temperance meetings, and Governor LaFollette even spoke here on several occasions. The Stoughton High School held graduation exercises here until 1938. There were Junior and Senior class plays until 1953, by which time the Opera House was painted over with a dull gray paint and extensively damaged by roof leaks and was eventually shut down. The clock tower was removed in 1961.

In the early 1980’s, a decision was made to save the building and government offices. The “Friends of’ the Opera House” was established and citizens came forward to fund and work on the restoration. A committee was also established to plan and complete the restoration of the Opera House.

The first project was to restore the clock tower, which was completed in 1988 and a likeness of it is now used as the logo for the City of Stoughton: In 1990, a fire escape was added and in 1992 air conditioning was installed. A matching grant from the Jeffries Family Foundation funded much of the restoration work. The City of Stoughton contributed to the restoration of the building’s main entrance and the addition of an elevator and restrooms in the basement.

Plaster, carpets, floor lights, dressing rooms, paint, handicapped accessibility and the latest in state-of-the-art equipment combine to make the Stoughton Opera House a wonderful mixture of Victorian and modern elements. The “crown jewel” of Stoughton has been restored and enhanced and is lovelier than ever.