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The John & Nancy Hughes Theater is the cultural heart of Lake Forest/Lake Bluff.  We offer a robust children’s theater program (PASTA), CENTERSTAGE in Lake Forest, a community theater group for all ages, and theater space for performing arts organizations including local symphony, dance studios, music recitals and Lake Forest College music performances. 


We have renovated our theater into a state-of-the art performing arts space that will become the signature of Gorton Community Center.  A new entrance leads visitors into a stunning 309-seat theater with new technology systems including sound, projection and lights.  The theater offers children, teens and adults the unforgettable experience of performing on a world-class stage.  It allows us to present films from classics to independent and documentaries.  And, we attract celebrated artists to our new performing arts center, creating a more vibrant cultural life in our community. 

The new theater includes:

  • DCP Film Projection
  • Movie-theater quality screen for large format films
  • New interior entrance, featuring an elegant wall of glass to invite people into the space
  • Modern sound and speaker system
  • Digital lighting system
  • Paging system that will allow communication between the backstage and dressing areas
  • New theater seating
  • Hearing Loop assistive listening system 

Interested in booking the John & Nancy Hughes Theater for your event?  Please call Gorton Community Center, 847-234-6060 for the most current information on this exciting project.


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