First, let's pinpoint what falls into the performing arts category. Here's the list of examples from the US Copyright Office:
"Performing arts works are intended to be 'performed' directly before an audience or indirectly 'by means of any device or process.'
Included are (1) musical works, including any accompanying words;
(2) dramatic works, such as scripts, including any accompanying music;
(3) pantomimes and choreographic works; and
(4) motion pictures and other audiovisual works."
Here are some books about copyrights:
Now to file an application:
The application is fairly simple & the cost is $45 per application.
Despite what others state, a "poor man's" copyright is NOT the same as registering it. Here's what the US Copyright Office has to say:
"The practice of sending a copy of your own work to yourself is sometimes called a 'poor man’s copyright.' There is no provision in the copyright law regarding any such type of protection, and it is not a substitute for registration."
Lastly, here are two great resources: