involving writing a fiction novel depicting a musical theatre show.
My question is if I am writing a fiction novel and my lead characters are actors, how far can I go in terms of describing what is happening if they are acting on stage without breaching copyright?
The example I want to use is Andrew Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera. My basic understanding is that under fair use
I could state they are performing "Phantom of the Opera" but I cannot refer to song titles or any music
lyrics. Does this mean the Phantom of the Opera characters are copyrighted too? The novel that the Andrew Lloyd Webber's show is based on is in the public domain as the author died in 1927, but surely Andrew Lloyd Webber has copyright on the characters in terms of the stage show?
There are ways around mentioning song title or lyrics, but it becomes more difficult if I cannot state the play, which characters they are playing or describe the scene.
Can I refer to the lyrics so long as they are not singing the lyrics?
E.g. "I want to rehearse" The director said. "Let's take it from "Down Once More" (down once more being the incriminating song lyrics)
Any light you can shed on this would be much appreciated.