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Performance Rights

Q. Do I need permission to put on a play?

A: Yes! Under Copyright Law it is essential that you get written permission for any public performance of a play. This includes free performances and applies even if you only wish to perform a short scene or extract from the play. Please remember that not only is this a legal obligation, but it is through royalties that playwrights make their living.

Q: Are there any exceptions?

A: Yes, in the following circumstances:

1. Works out of copyright

Permission is not required if copyright on the play has expired. In most cases copyright lasts from the time of creation for the life of the creator plus 70 years. If you are not sure whether copyright on a play has expired it is best to check before planning your production.

2. Classroom performance

Dramatic works can be read aloud or performed in class without seeking permission, so long as the audience is limited to those taking part in the instruction i.e. staff and students only. However permission must be given for school performances outside the classroom, including to families and friends.

Q: How do I get permission to put on a play?

A: In most cases you should contact the author’s agent to check that the performing rights are available. Information about who handles the performing rights for a play can be found on each product page on the Currency website, or on the imprint page of the published book. If you need further information, or no agent details are listed, then contact Currency Press.

NOTE: You should apply for performance rights at least three months prior to your proposed production and be aware that the rights may not be available.

Q: What information do I need to provide in my application for performance rights?

Performance Rights Enquiry Form


In most cases applications for performing rights should be sent directly to the author's agent.  

Please submit this form only where Currency is listed as the agent for performing rights, or where no agent details are available.  For all other enquiries, apply to the agent directly as listed under the title information on our website.

A: Please provide the following information in your application.


  1. Title of Play
  2. Author
  3. Name of production company
  4. Name of Director
  5. Contact Name
  6. Contact Email
  7. Contact Telephone
  8. Company Website
  9. Mailing Address
  10. Date of 1st Performance
  11. Date of Final Performance
  12. Total No. of Performances
  13. Name of Venue
  14. Venue Seating Capacity
  15. Ticket Prices (Full/Concession)
  16. Any other relevant information