Pilot programme to give term licences for the arts to start in July

From July onwards, some performing arts companies will no longer have to apply to the Media Development Authority (MDA) for a licence before staging each production.

A pilot run of the Arts Term Licensing scheme will kick in, through which arts companies can classify their own ratings for shows in accordance with MDA's age-appropriate guidelines.

From Monday May 12, members of the public are invited to give their views on the scheme, which is set to roll out fully in early 2015.

Under the scheme, which is optional, arts companies can apply for one of two types of licences. Each licence lasts for a year, after which it will be subject to review.

Tier 1 licences allow for the classification of G-rated performances, but does not cover unscripted performances or those with content which touches on race, religion or politics. These will still have to be submitted to the MDA for an event-based licence.

Tier 2 licences allow for the classification of all performances, up to R18, but unscripted performances and outdoor performances with a rating above G will have to be submitted to the MDA for event-based licensing.

Companies who take part in the scheme will also need to appoint an MDA-registered content assessor, who will be trained in classifying each show according to MDA guidelines.

The public consultation document is available at www.mda.gov.sg, and comments may be sent to policy_consultations@mda.gov.sg. Submissions must be made before 5pm on May 30.