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‘Les Miserables’ concert mired in copyright feud

Poster image for “Les Miserables” concert (K&P Entertainment)
Poster image for “Les Miserables” concert (K&P Entertainment)

The “Les Miserables” concert by K&P Entertainment, slated to take place this month in Seoul and Busan, has become mired in a copyright dispute.

On Monday, Les Miserables Korea, which holds performance rights to the Korean-language version of the English musical in Korea, claimed that the upcoming concert is an unauthorized production that violates the musical’s copyrights.

K&P Entertainment on Tuesday refuted the claim, saying that the upcoming concert is based on a “French-language concert staged by a French production. It is irrelevant from the English version of the ‘Les Miserables’ musical.”

“Musical ‘Les Miserable’ was first staged in French in Paris, France in 1980, before Cameron Mackintosh produced the English version of the show in 1985,” the announcement said.

The concert was produced based on the legal advices of an intellectual property lawyer, it added.

“Concert productions do not require pre-authorization of the copyright holders. The process requires pre-notice to a copyright committee and payment afterwards,” it said.

“Regarding concerns over the copyright breach against the English version of the musical ‘Les Miserables,’ we tried to come to an agreement with the company.”

Les Miserables Korea has been arguing that the upcoming concert production has not been approved by the original musical’s lyricist Alain Boublil, composer Claude-Michel Schonberg and the original musical production company Cameron Mackintosh.

The English version of the musical “Les Miserables” premiered in London in 1985. In Korea, the licensed version of the musical was staged in 2012 and 2015, produced by Les Miserables Korea.

The concert will take place on Saturday and Sunday in Busan, and from May 19 to 23 in Seoul.

By Im Eun-byel (silverstar@heraldcorp.com)
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