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1877: Singers caught out and fined

Updated: Dec 8, 2023

A short time since, a concert was given at Cuckfield for the benefit of the local Soup Fund, and at it, Mr EH Payne and Mrs. Payne (Miss L Anscombe), sang from Verdi's I Trovatore the duet On the ‘Si La Stanchezza’ (Home to our mountains). On the day following the concert, these singers received a letter from a London solicitor, demanding a fine of £2 each for singing a copyright work the duet without permission.

Mr Payne at once wrote to Mr C Jeffreys, the well-known music publisher, and the holder of the copyright of the duet named, explaining that the selection was sung in ignorance of the copyright; and Mr. Jeffreys kindly remitted the fine on payment of the law expenses incurred.

Southern Weekly News, 27 January 1877

Contributed by Malcolm Davison..

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