Performing rights and copyright

Copyright, licensing and permissions - Part 5: Recording and distributing music

When your group decides to perform a piece of music there will be copyright laws, permissions and licenses to be aware of. Part 5 of our guidance looks at how that applies to making and sharing a music recording in either a physical or digital format. 

There are three different copyrights to be aware of for a piece of music.

PRS: Overview

Performing Rights are the right to give a live performance of a piece of music which is in copyright. For each performance a fee will be due to the owner of the copyright for that piece of music (known as royalties), which is usually collected by PRS for Music. 

Who are PRS for Music? 

PRS for Music is a collecting society representing the performing rights of its songwriter, composer and music publisher members in the UK. PRS for Music licenses the use of its members’ music, collects royalty payments on their behalf and then distributes them. 

Performing rights (PRS) royalties tariff: 1 Nov 2023 – 31 Oct 2024

The tariff to be used by Making Music members when paying performing rights royalties to PRS when renewing membership for 2025.

How to pay performing rights (PRS) fees

This guidance will outline when you need to pay performing rights fees and how to pay them.

Performing Rights (PRS) for dramatico-musical works

If you're performing dramatico-musical works (e.g. an opera, musical, revue, pantomime or ballets) then Grand Rights apply and additional permissions must be sought be required.