Show artwork for Every Seat Tells a Story
MTC Foundation

Every Seat Tells a Story

Next time you take your seat at the Sumner, take a moment to look around at the personal dedications that adorn the seats around you.

Each seat plaque is placed in acknowledgement of a gift to MTC’s Seat Dedication program and tells a story of friendship, family and love of theatre.

One such story is that of Julie Nelson and Jan Dircks. Julie and Jan met through work over 40 years ago and have been great friends ever since.

MTC has played a big part in their ongoing friendship. An early performance they fondly remember seeing together was Amanda Muggleton as Shirley Valentine at the Russell Street Theatre.

As Jan explained, subscribing to MTC ‘has been our way of catching up. We live on opposite sides of the city and this is where we get together and it’s what we enjoy – the theatre’. When their children were young, having an MTC subscription meant that they had to put aside some time for themselves, ‘which was never easy’, says Jan.

Julie loves the variety of shows that make up each MTC season. ‘Sometimes I might be challenged, but then sometimes I might be really delighted or surprised by what we see. It’s given us a lot of enjoyment over the years and now we want to give back.’

To celebrate their friendship, Julie and Jan have dedicated two seats at the Sumner, side by side, in honour of each other’s best friend. ‘This is our gift to us,’ explained Julie. ‘I told my son and he said, “It’s great. [It’s] something for you and it’s something for MTC”.’

MTC is a really important part of our life. Our lives would be much less rich without the theatre.’

Why not become a part of the MTC story by dedicating your own seat in honour, or in memory, of a loved one, or to celebrate your love of theatre? It could also be the perfect birthday or Christmas present for the theatre lover in your life and your $2,000 tax-deductible donation, per seat, will help us maintain and improve the facilities and services in our magnificent theatre. Donors may select their own individual seat subject to availability.

MTC would like to thank Julie, Jan and all of our seat donors for their generous support.

For more information about dedicating a seat please contact MTC’s Annual Giving Manager, Chris Walters on 03 8688 0938 or

Published on 2 November 2016

Explore More