Public Performance Licence

Performing Arts Licence

How to Obtain a Public Performance License?

Event Management Company (EMC): Hello! We're gearing up for an event in India, and we'll be featuring a variety of copyrighted music. What's the scoop on obtaining a Public Performance License here?

Lawyer (L): Great to hear from you! To host an event with copyrighted music in India, you'll need to obtain a Public Performance License from the relevant performing rights organisations (PROs). In India, major PROs include IPRS (Indian Performing Right Society), PPL (Phonographic Performance Limited), and Novex Communications. 

EMC: Can you break down the process for obtaining these licences? Are there specific details you need from us?

L: Absolutely. To start, you'll need to provide details about the event, such as the venue, date, and types of performances involving copyrighted material. The PROs will assess your requirements based on this information. Only after ascertaining which PRO has the power to issue the permission for the songs you plan to use, can you reach out to them to apply for the necessary licences.

EMC:What is the time frame for getting this licence and are there any costs associated with obtaining these licences?

L: The timeline can vary, but it's better to start the process well in advance. Costs depend on factors like the scale of the event, venue capacity, and the specific songs you'll be using. The PROs will provide you with a fee structure, and it's essential to negotiate and finalise these details before the event.

EMC: Anything else we should keep in mind?

L: Ensure that you maintain clear records of the songs you plan to use, and make sure the licences obtained cover all aspects of public performance. It's also a good idea to confirm the duration of the licence to avoid any legal complications during or after the event.

What are  Performing Rights Organisations (PROs)?

Event Management Company (EMC): We keep hearing about these performing rights organisations (PROs). What exactly are they, and why do we need to deal with them?

Lawyer (L): Excellent question! Performing Rights Organizations, or PROs, are entities that represent songwriters, composers, and music publishers in managing and licensing public performance rights. In India, major PROs include IPRS, PPL, and Novex Communications.

EMC: Why are PROs involved in any event? What is their role?

L: PROs play an important role in ensuring that creators of original works and them being the rights holders (copyright, trademark etc.) are fairly compensated when their art is performed or displayed in public. When you obtain a Public Performance License from a PRO, you're essentially getting the legal permission to use the copyrighted music / artwork they hold/ represent at your event.

EMC: How do these PROs know which songs are being used at our event? Do we need to provide them with a list?

L: Yes a comprehensive list has to be prepared and given to the PRO. As part of the licence application process, you'll need to provide details about the songs you intend to use, the duration of the event, the venue, and other relevant information. 

This allows the PRO to determine the appropriate licence fees and ensures that the rights holders receive fair compensation.

EMC: Are there specific PROs for different types of music, or do they cover all genres?

L: PROs typically have a diverse catalogue that covers various genres. However, specific PROs may represent different sets of rights holders, so it's essential to identify which PROs represent the repertoire of the songs you plan to use. For example, IPRS is known for its representation of Indian and international repertoire.

EMC: What happens if we don't obtain licences from these PROs? Are there legal consequences?

L: If you use copyrighted music without the necessary licences, you could face legal consequences, including fines or injunctions. PROs actively monitor public performances, and failing to comply with licensing requirements may result in legal action.

How do we Contact the PROs? What are their names? Give their Adresses, Websites and other Details.

Event Management Company (EMC): We're ready to reach out to the performing rights organisations (PROs). How do we contact them, and what are their details?

Lawyer (L): Great! Here are the contact details for the major PROs in India:

1. IPRS (Indian Performing Right Society):

- Website: [IPRS Website](

- Contact Email:

- Address: Indian Performing Right Society Ltd., C-1, Wadia International Centre, Pandurang Budhkar Marg, Worli, Mumbai - 400025, Maharashtra, India.

2. PPL (Phonographic Performance Limited):

- Website: [PPL India Website](

- Contact Email:

- Address: Phonographic Performance Ltd., Trade Centre, 2nd Floor, Kamala Mills Compound, S.B. Marg, Lower Parel, Mumbai - 400013, Maharashtra, India.

3. Novex Communications:

- Website: [Novex Communications Website](

- Contact Email:

- Address: Novex Communications Pvt. Ltd., 703, Dalamal Towers, Free Press Journal Marg, Nariman Point, Mumbai - 400021, Maharashtra, India.

EMC: This is helpful. Are there any specific documents or information we should prepare before contacting them?

L: Yes, before reaching out, ensure you have details about the event, such as the venue, date, and a list of songs you plan to use. Having this information ready will expedite the licensing process.

EMC: What's the usual timeframe for them to process these licence applications?

L: The processing time can vary. It is advisable to initiate the application well in advance of any event. Factors such as the complexity of the event and the responsiveness of all parties, influences the timeline.

What are the different type of licences that we have to apply to hold an event in Kolkata?

Event Management Company (EMC): We're ready to dive into the licensing process for our event in Kolkata. What are the different licences we need to apply for?

Lawyer (L): Certainly, organising an event involves several licences. Here are the key ones you'll need for an event in Kolkata:

1. Public Performance License from IPRS:

- Purpose: To use copyrighted music during live performances or presentations.

- Contact Details: [IPRS Website](

2. Phonographic Performance License from PPL:

- Purpose: Required if you plan to play recorded music at your event.

- Contact Details: [PPL India Website](

3. Venue Licence:

- Purpose: Permission from the venue owner or local authorities to use the space for your event.

- Contact: Local municipal or district offices for venue-specific regulations.

4. Liquor Licence:

- Purpose: Necessary if you plan to serve alcoholic beverages at the event.

- Contact: Excise Department of West Bengal or the local municipal authority.

5. Police Clearance:

- Purpose: Ensures that the event doesn't pose security concerns.

- Contact: Local police station or the Deputy Commissioner of Police.

6. Fire NOC (No Objection Certificate):

- Purpose: Ensures compliance with fire safety regulations.

- Contact: Local fire department or municipal corporation.

7. Health License:

- Purpose: If you're serving food, ensure compliance with health and safety regulations.

- Contact: Local health department or municipal corporation.

8. Synchronisation Licence:

- Purpose: If you plan to use music in synchronisation with visual content (e.g., videos, presentations), you'll need this licence.

- Contact Details: Typically obtained directly from the copyright owner or music publisher.

EMC: That's comprehensive. Are there any other licences or permits that we might be missing?

L: Depending on the nature of your event, you might also need specific permissions for activities like outdoor advertising, temporary structures, or special permits for events in public spaces. It is advisable to visit the municipal corporation website

What Happens if due to Ignorance or Error of Omission, we have not Applied for a Particular License?

Event Management Company (EMC): What if, hypothetically, we decide not to apply for any of the licences mentioned? What could be the consequences?

Lawyer (L): Operating an event without obtaining the necessary licences can have serious legal consequences. Here's a breakdown:

1. Legal Action: Copyright holders and performing rights organisations actively monitor events. If any of the agencies or someone from the public complains/ claims that the literary/ musical/ any artwork has been used unauthorised, i.e. use of copyrighted material has taken place, then legal action against the event organisers will be taken..

2. Fines and Penalties: Fines and penalties are levied for non-compliance with licensing requirements by the local authorities and regulatory bodies. The quantum of these consequences depend on the jurisdiction and the specific regulations violated.

3. Injunctions: Copyright holders or authorities may seek injunctions to stop the event if they determine that it is operating without the required licences.

4. Damage to Reputation: Operating without proper licence can harm the reputation of the event management company. It may lead to negative publicity, affecting future events and partnerships.

EMC: So, what's the best course of action if we realise we haven't obtained the required licences in time?

L: If post the event, or during the event, you realise you have not obtained the certain licences, it's best to take corrective action, immediately. Either, stop the unauthorised use of copyrighted material or after the event reach out to the relevant rights holders and licensing authorities to discuss obtaining retroactive licences. 

What is the Process to Apply for Licences?

Event Management Company (EMC): We're ready to start the application process for the various licences needed for our event. Could you walk us through the general process?

Lawyer (L): Certainly! The process may vary slightly depending on the type of licence, but here's a general guide:

1. Public Performance License:

- Visit the official website of the performing rights organisation (PRO) such as IPRS.

- Click on the "Licence Application" section.

- Some states have the formats uploaded. These have to be downloaded and then filled and physically submitted. Some states offer a c complete online application submission. Complete the offline/ online application form with details about the event, including venue, date, duration, and a list of songs/ art work/ literary work to be used/performed.

- Submit any required documentation, such as a setlist or schedule.

2. Phonographic Performance License (e.g., PPL):

- Visit the official website of the phonographic rights organisation (PRO) like PPL India.

- Go to the "Licensing" or "Licence Application" section.

- Complete the application form, providing information about your event and the recorded music planned to be used.

- Submit the documents as enumerated 

- Pay the licensing fees.

3. Municipal Licence:

- Contact the local municipal.

- The form is available on the website of the municipality.

- They also ask for an affidavit on NJSP duly notarised.

- The details relating to venue, date, time, temporary stalls etc have to be mentioned.

- Submit the form along with the required supporting documents

- Pay the applicable fees.

4. Liquor Licence:

- Reach out to the Excise Department of West Bengal or the local municipal authority.

- Obtain the liquor licence application form.

- Fill the form, providing details about the event and your plans for serving alcohol.

- Submit the application with the required documents

- Pay the necessary fees.

5. Police Clearance:

- First, find out the local police station under whose jurisdiction the event venue will fall.

- Vist the police station to know the process of the application 

- generally, a letter with all pertinent details like, date, venue address, no of people expected, timing, etc have to be mentioned.

- At the time of submitting the letter, inquire about any further process to be completed for getting the police clearance for the event.

- Complete any required forms and provide the necessary information.

6. Fire NOC (No Objection Certificate):

- Reach out to the local fire department or municipal corporation.

- Obtain the application form for a Fire NOC.

- Complete the form, ensuring compliance with fire safety regulations.

- Submit the form along with any supporting documents.

7. Health License:

- Contact the local health department or municipal corporation.

- Inquire about the health licence application process.

- Complete the application form, providing details about food safety measures if applicable.

- Submit the form along with all documentation.

8. Synchronisation Licence:

- Contact the copyright owner or music publisher directly.

- Inquire about the process for obtaining a synchronisation licence.

- Complete any required forms and provide details about how the music will be synchronised with visual content.

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