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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000002.txt from 1997/12

From: Roger Shilcock <>
Date: Mon, 1 Dec 1997 04:01:41 -0500

Re Europe: I think the increase in length of time since the author's death
is a matter of EU law, nad not something to do woth heirs being
Roger Shilcock

On Sat, 29 Nov 1997, avrahm galper wrote:

> Date: Sat, 29 Nov 1997 21:33:54 -0500
> From: avrahm galper <>
> Reply-To:
> To:
> Copyright and transcribing
> TheToronto Symphony used to rent a lot of music that was copyright, such
> as Symphonies by Prokofief and the like.
> They were allowed to make extra copies, strings and things like that.
> But the condition was, that after the performance all the parts PLUS THE
> COPIES were to go back to the rental company.
> Some of us would sneak out a part or so, but it was illegal.
> My first encounter with transcribing and copyrighting was when I thought
> that Debussy was already public domain.
> I transcribed Syrinx by Debussy into a comfortable key for clarinet and
> gave it to Selmer,Toronto.
> They in turn sent and gave it to the CLARINET magazine to print so all
> clarinet players could learn it.
> It was printed in one of the issues, I think in 1993 or 1994.
> A letter came from Theodore Presser claiming rights to this and a whole
> correspondence ensued.
> Eventually they want to know how many copies were printed and sold etc.
> When they found out that no copies were printed or sold, they stopped
> writing.
> My friend, who is active in these things, told me that for them to sue
> would cost them hundreds of dollars just to write a lawyer's letter. It
> didn't pay to pursue it.
> There is a group here called SOCAN that can tell one what is public
> domain or not.
> A few weeks ago I enquired about Syrinx again and it is public domain,
> in Canada for sure. I think that in the US also.
> I had wanted to transcribe Bartok's Roumanian dances for clarinet and
> piano. My source told me that at the beginning of 1997 it becomes
> public domain in the USA and Canada.
> BUT NOT IN EUROPE. There the heirs have managed to increase the
> copyright by some years.
> Anyway, I went ahead and printed my version of the Roumanian dances.
> You really have to know what you can do and what you can't.
> All this surmising is questionable. It pays to know beforehand.
> I think that it's possible that one can write the Library of Congress
> and find out.
> If you have to go through lawyers, it can only cost you a lot of money
> for nothing.
> Avrahm Galper

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