Re: Contracts for custom marching show
Posted by An Arranger on 10/17/2019, 8:43 am, in reply to "Contracts for custom marching show"
I'm considering hiring an arranger for a custom marching show next year. We've been doing stock shows, but it's time to step up the game.
I'm wondering what the "industry standard" is for contracts. Should I expect rights for x number of performances? For a specified time?
>> Most arrangers will license you the show for the academic year and won't put a restriction on the number of times you perform it. Even though you will retain the files of the music, you don't receive ownership of the show meaning that if in 5-6 years you want to do it again, you'll need to re-license it. This is more like doing a musical rental than buying something off of JW Pepper.
As far as on the copyright side of things, most verbiage I have seen is along the lines of a time period within the academic year. So, if you went to Tresona for licensing, you will have to enter dates for the usage of that material for various performances. The most common thing I have seen is August 1st to some date later in the season like November 15th or December 1st. >>
If I decide in 5-6 years that I want to repeat the same show, would I need to start all over with the rights? Or is it a one-time purchase like buying a chart off the shelf for concert band?
>> If you are referring to copyright permissions, then yes, you will need to reapply. In the world of marching music, licenses are paid by year not by project. In the world of publishing, licenses are paid for the project. This is why you can pull the music from Back to the Future from library and play it on your concert without fear of a lawsuit. Chances are the publisher had to pay a hefty sum for the rights to publish that arrangement. For marching music, you are essentially paying for a window of time. >>
If part of my show is a piece off the shelf, and we're playing it as written, do I need additional rights? What if we only play an excerpt of that piece?
>> Legally speaking, if you take that same Back to the Future arrangement and perform it exactly as intended on the field, then you will have zero copyright issues. Once you change it any way, you will need permission from the copyright holder to do so. This is most common when having someone write battery parts or creating additional front ensemble parts.
I am not totally sure about the legality of using an excerpt.>>