Changes to Dramatic Context licensing

Wednesday, 20 Dec 2017

Do you promote or produce performances:

  • for the live stage
  • containing a storyline?
  • with narrators and/or characters?
  • that are defined as a ballet?*

Then you may benefit from the new Dramatic Context licensing definition. 

At the APRA AMCOS Annual General Meeting held on 22 November 2017 the APRA Board voted to adopt a new definition of Dramatic Context to come into effect on 1 January 2018.

This follows a request from the Board in November 2016 to review the definition of Dramatic Context and how music was being licensed in theatre, dance and shows. We consulted extensively with licensees, Live Performance Australia, AMPAL and other stakeholders to develop a definition that ensured consistency of licensing across markets.

FROM NEXT YEAR DRAMATIC CONTEXT MEANS THE PERFORMANCE OF MUSICAL WORKS:

  1. in conjunction with a presentation on the live stage that has:
    1. a storyline; and
    2. one or more narrators or characters; or
  2. as a Ballet;

 
*Ballet means a choreographic work having a story, plot or abstract idea devised or used for the purpose of interpretation by dancing and/or miming. Ballet does not include country or folk dancing, tap dancing or precision dancing sequences. 


WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR ME?

If the above definition applies to your productions, your APRA AMCOS licence arrangements may change from 1 January 2018.

If your production was licensed under the previous definition of Dramatic Context then you may now be re-licensed under a different scheme, such as an event, a festival or a special purpose featured music licence.

GOOD NEWS FOR SCHOOLS AND SMALL PRODUCTIONS
 
The new arrangement means that for many educational institutions, dance schools and low-value productions, we'll be able to quickly license the Dramatic Context performance of the works they wish to use, without having to refer back to the copyright owner.

GOOD NEWS FOR PRODUCERS
 
For licensees, when production elements change during a rehearsal process, the new definition provides enormous latitude - the licence relates to the nature of the production, rather than to specific production elements so there will no longer be a need to keep us updated of slight production changes.

GOOD NEWS FOR GLOBAL TOURING SHOWS
 
The previous definition differed from the one used in major theatrical markets, such as the UK. Until now, some productions were licensed as concerts in the UK but licensed as Dramatic Context in New Zealand. 
 

NEED MORE INFO?
 
Visit our licence page for more information, or download our Dramatic Context Information Guide.
 
Current licensees are encouraged to review their shows and contact Emma Fleetwood in our Theatrical Licensing team with any queries on 0800 800 663 ext 724 or via email


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