What is a cue sheet? 

A cue sheet is a record of all the songs and compositions used in a film and television production. We need these for every locally produced program broadcast in New Zealand.

All music used in a production need to be supplied to us because we distribute on the public performance of the work. Regardless of how music is obtained (ie purchased/commissioned), all music needs to be identified. This also applies to royalty free music. 

Include these details in your cue sheet header:

  • Production Title
  • Episode Title/Actors Names/Name of Event
  • Production Company
  • Production Number (if available)
  • Country of Origin
  • Series Number (if relevant)
  • Episode Number (if relevant)
  • Director (only applicable to Films/Documentaries)
  • Year of Production
  • Total Production Duration
  • Date of Broadcast

Include these details about the song or composition used: 

  • Song Title
  • Composer (if available)
  • Performer
  • Publisher (if available)
  • Record Label (required if the work is Production Music)
  • Catalogue Disc Number (required if the work is Production Music)
  • Track Number (required if the work is Production Music)
  • Duration used
  • Work Origin – Commercial, Production Music or Specially Commissioned
  • Vocal/Instrumental/Mix (if multiple versions exist)
  • Usage Type – Theme, Background or Featured. 

Key Terms

Theme refers to music that is regularly or solely associated with a television series, individual program or film, when used as the opening and/or closing theme. Theme excludes music used in conjunction with program previews (teasers) play ons/offs or recaps, which are credited as background music. 

Background refers to any songs or compositions used in the broadcast that can only be heard by the audience at home – not by the characters/actors/live audience/hosts etc. This also applies to any prepackaged/prerecorded or post-production stories/items within the broadcast.

Featured refers to music which falls into one or more of the following categories:

  • Music performed by one of the characters or music that is listened to by characters in a scene 
  • Music performed in music video clips
  • Music performed in association with choreographed dance sequences
  • Music performed “on camera”

Cue sheets can either be submitted by emailing a completed Excel template to logs@apra.com.au, or via our Online Cue System.  

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