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Licensing Copyright Protected Material
Plays and musicals are composed by writers and musicians; their material is their intellectual property, and performing their material without permission is considered theft of their intellectual property.
Some writers permit their work to be adapted for a religious audience, but not all. To check whether a script can be adapted for religious reasons, or to obtain permission to perform a published play or musical, begin by checking the following agencies which control the rights for the majority of scripts and music compositions.
•Samuel French, mainly for theater scripts - http://www.samuelfrench.com/
•Musical Theater International (MTI), mainly for musical theater scripts/scores - http://mtishows.com/
•BMI, mainly for music - http://www.bmi.com/licensing/
•SESAC, mainly for music - http://www.sesac.com/Licensing/FAQsGeneral.aspx
•ASCAP, mainly for music - http://www.ascap.com/licensing/licensingfaq.aspx
To License specifically women-only Jewish material, some options are now available:
•Scripts by Bible-Arts (Esther, Noah, Ruth & Naomi) - http://bible-arts.com/license.htm
•Scripts by Robin Garbose (Light for Greytowers, Heart That Sings, Operation Candlelight)- http://www.kolneshama.org/play-script-catalogue/
If the title you seek cannot be found through any of these agencies or sites, try to search for the private organization or individual responsible for granting the “rights” to perform the material.
Make sure to have the legal permission needed to perform the material you wish to perform before you begin the artistic process, otherwise you will be in violation of U.S. copyright law, as well as halacha in using what is not yours, falsifying information in your playbill, and ignoring the law of the land.
Thank you so much for respecting this matter in your artistic work - we wish you only mazal and blessing, and encourage you to invite blessing through honest and ethical conduct.