August 2013 Bar Bulletin
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The Law of Broadway

By Rita Dermody


Seattle was recently reminded, with the production of "Hairspray" with the Seattle Men's Chorus, that it is an incubator for new musical theater. According to Broadway World (, the 5th Avenue Theatre has produced 14 new musicals since 2002. Seven of those musicals have earned a total of 14 Tony Awards.

The Law Library has several resources to support attorneys who practice entertainment law. For those who want to know a little about entertainment law, we recommend Entertainment Law for the General Practitioner by S.M. Frascogna, et al., published by the American Bar Association (2011). This book provides a quick overview of the principles of entertainment law, copyright, trade identity, celebrity rights, music, live performances and more.

Whether you are a movie buff or an entertainment law attorney, The Little Book of Movie Law by Carol Robertson may be for you, also published by the American Bar Association (2012). Each section is designated as an "Intermission." For example, Intermission 1 is titled "Scandals in Hollywood: Selling Movies and Hiding the Foibles of the Stars." The chapters are designated as "Reels." Each reel begins with a quote from a movie and a case citation to a court opinion to introduce the topic.

For an in-depth treatment of entertainment law, we recommend Entertainment Law: Legal Concepts and Business Practices, 3d ed., published by Thomson Reuters/West. This five-volume set covers all aspects of entertainment law and includes more than 100 forms covering topics from movies, to live theatrical forms, to ringtone licenses.

For your entertainment, the Law Library has a collection of DVDs that includes some connected to law. It may be a story of a famous case or story, such as "To Kill a Mockingbird," it may be written by an attorney, or contain a scene related to law. Other examples include "Legal Eagles" and "The Ox-Bow Incident."

Whatever your area of expertise, we will have something of interest for you in the Law Library.


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