Abstract

Copyright performances—one-time, semi-staged productions created solely to secure performing rights in a play—pervaded the late-nineteenth-century British stage. This essay explains the history and rationale of copyright performances, going on to explore how copyright performances’ growth exposed changes in theatrical commerce, while anticipating and spreading the minimal performance aesthetic that defined modern drama. Above all, this short-lived, aberrant practice reveals the tensions that arose from the evolving copyright law’s efforts to commodify theatrical performances.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-332X
Print ISSN
0192-2882
Pages
pp. 161-177
Launched on MUSE
2012-05-24
Open Access
N
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