Compendium of U.S. Copyright Practices, 3rd Edition

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802.6 (D) Adaptations

802.6 (D) Adaptations

A musical adaptation may be registered as a derivative work if the author contributed a sufficient amount of original authorship to the preexisting musical work. An adaptation may involve a reworking of the melody, rhythm, harmony, and/or lyrics in a preexisting musical work that changes the style or genre of that work. It also may include a lyrical adaptation of the text of a preexisting work, such as an adapted poem or adapted Biblical text.


• A hip hop musical based on a Bizet opera.

• A song based on a Shakespearean sonnet.

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