Live performance royalties
We pay royalties for various kinds of live performance of our members' music, including tours, gigs, DJ sets, concerts and busking. These performances can be reported through the venues or by members, publishers and managers through our online live reporting service.
How we calculate
We calculate and collect royalties in different ways for live performances, depending on the type of performance.
Small venues and gigs
If members play at a small licensed venue that is licensed under our Gigs and Clubs scheme, we pay a set royalty for each reported event. This is shared between all PRS writers whose work is performed at the event. This is currently about £10 for each event. The royalty fee changes each year, depending on the money collected from the venues in the scheme.
Buskers, who perform in the designated areas within London Underground stations, need to report each performance to receive a royalty fee for each busking session.
In accordance with our Busking Scheme rules, please remember that it is essential you submit claims for any covers you perform, as well as your own music. We will actively monitor performance reporting in the future to ensure the claims we receive adhere to these rules.
For relevant busking performances, any claims or set list submissions made after the 1 July 2017 will be distributed at the new per session rate of £1.47.
Venues are charged a proportion of gross box office receipts, three percent from 1988 to June 2018 and four percent minimum from July 2018 onwards, which we then divide to give each work a value for the number of seconds that it was performed.
Each year, venues choose whether to pay a flat rate, which is currently 4.8 percent of box office receipts. Or they can use a sliding scale that is based on the amount of copyright music being performed. This is currently up to eight percent of box office receipts.
Royalty rates are often a combination of those we use for classical and popular concerts.
Live concert service
For very large live events, our tailored live concert service offers a fixed admin cost and faster payment.
We use the sample method of royalty collection for covers bands, where their repertoire is often limited to a specific set of songs that's often repeated. The royalties are not paid to the performers but to the writers of the songs being performed.
Are you eligible to make a claim for a live performance?
If you are a PRS member we would strongly encourage you to report all live performances of your music to us as soon as possible. To be eligible for royalties you need to make sure:
- You were a PRS member at the time of performance*
- You’re reporting a performance within the right timeframe (please see next question).
- Your music was played live (e.g. the broadcast of recorded music wouldn’t qualify as a live performance)
*Depending on which half of the year your application was processed in, we consider you to have been a member from 1 January or 1 July of the year you joined.