Southbank Theatre

While Southbank Theatre is the principal home of Melbourne Theatre Company, there are opportunities for other companies and organisations to hire performance and function spaces within the Theatre. Some of the companies which have presented at the Theatre include the Royal Shakespeare Company, Australian Dance Theatre, Akram Kahn Company, Phillip Adams BalletLab, Arena Theatre Company, Midsumma Festival, Melbourne Festival and Sydney Dance Company, as well as many Melbourne based independent companies. Our spaces are also regularly used by training institutions and performing arts schools.

Melbourne Theatre Company Headquarters

Melbourne Theatre Company’s administration and production headquarters has a number of rehearsal rooms which may be available for hire if not being used to prepare Melbourne Theatre Company’s forthcoming productions.

Find out more information about the various spaces available for hire at Southbank Theatre and Melbourne Theatre Company below.

The Lawler

The Lawler is a studio space with a standard capacity of 163. The modular seating can be moved to create multiple configurations, depending on the design of your production or event. As well as theatrical productions, the Lawler can be used for conferences, meetings, rehearsals, auditions and functions or dinners. Supported by a team of skilled stage technicians and professional Front of House staff, benefits of presenting in the Lawler include: an enviable location in the heart of Melbourne’s arts precinct, exposure to a large audience already attending other events at Southbank Theatre prior to and during your season, a dedicated full-time Box Office and access to our new in-house restaurant, Miss Pearl Bar + Dining. The Lawler is an ideal performance space for small or independent productions and offers substantial technical equipment and facilities as standard with your hire.

In 2024, the Lawler has a significant program of activity already confirmed, being presented by Melbourne Theatre Company as well as by other producers. Therefore, availability may be limited across this year.

Download Technical Specifications for the Lawler

Download a floor plan of the Lawler with standard seating configuration (163 seats). More detailed technical plans and sections, including standard lighting rig, available on request.

Download Marketing Information for the Lawler, detailing the marketing support offered to Hirers.

For enquiries about hiring the Lawler, including details of Indicative Charges and General Conditions of Hire, please contact the Theatre Manager at or 03 8688 0803.

The Sumner

The Sumner is a traditional proscenium arch theatre with a capacity of 559. Along with Arts Centre Melbourne’s Playhouse and Fairfax Studio, it is a principal venue for Melbourne Theatre Company’s mainstage season.

In 2024, the Sumner has a full schedule of Melbourne Theatre Company productions programmed so it is not available to hire at any time throughout the year.


Function Rooms & Foyers

The Lounge is an oasis within the bustling Southbank Arts Precinct. These private function rooms on the second floor can be used together or divided for more intimate events. With views across the city through large windows or from the balcony, the rooms are perfect for cocktail functions for around 60 guests or sit-down dinners for up to 40. Or for smaller functions, enjoy cocktails in one room then move to the other for dinner. The rooms have in-built AV facilities, making them suitable for Board Room style meetings for up to 20 or theatre style presentations for around 30.

The Level 1 Foyer at Southbank Theatre is a large, open room that is filled with natural light during the day and overlooks the city skyline at night. It comfortably accommodates 200 for cocktails and has also been used for sit-down dinners, corporate presentations, and small trade shows. The foyer incorporates a full-service bar and has monitors that can display tailored messages for your guests, or a more detailed AV set-up and staging can be installed, if required. Availability of the foyer will be dependent on performance activity in the Sumner.

The Lawler may also be suitable for corporate functions and events. To give your guests a unique backstage experience, consider holding your event on the stage of the Lawler. Suitable for dinners of around 60, cocktail functions of around 100, or presentations using the existing seating bank followed by a reception on the stage itself, holding your function in the Lawler takes you ‘behind the scenes’ at Southbank Theatre.

For enquiries about hiring the Lounge, Foyers or the Lawler at Southbank Theatre, please contact the Theatre Manager at or 03 8688 0803.

Rehearsal Studios

Melbourne Theatre Company also has a number of rehearsal studios at its headquarters at 252 Sturt Street, Southbank. These studios are used throughout the year to rehearse Melbourne Theatre Company productions and for other activity but one or more may be available to hire at certain times.

For more information about availability and the facilities in the rehearsal studios at Melbourne Theatre Company headquarters, please contact Alyson Brown, Production Administrator at or 03 8688 0900.