Well the title says it all really, but if you want details...
My stage doesn't have an orchestra pit and so each time we do a musical we have to find some place to put the orchestra. We usually end up taking out a few seats just in front of the stage and cramming in a 5 piece band. This causes many acoustical problems between them being to loud for the audiance and to quiet for the performers. Last year we decided to try out MTPit which if you aren't familiar with uses a digitally recorded full orchestra and we rent the digital recorder from them and hook it into our system. We had so many compliments last year for the first time ever we decided to do it again this year.
Well it turns out when I mention this to the publishers they get out bent out of shape and start quoting their contracts about how they state that we must use an orchestra. Well MTpit says that we aren't using a synthesized piece of music but in fact are renting the orchestra from them it just happens to be recorded.
My question is who the heck is right? I mean I understand the publishers wishes for us to use live music but for some that just isn't possible. I'd really hate to have to go back to having to hear about how no one can hear the actors even when they are microphoned. But of course I really do not want to be caught up in a legal battle. We can't be the only ones with this problem.
Any legal minded people out there with some kind of idea on this? Or is it just the publishers trying to frighten us?