Music scholarships

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Jonny Easton

University Music Performance Scholarship

A Music Performance Scholar talks about his time at Kent

Each year the University of Kent awards Music Performance Scholarships to talented instrumentalists and singers. Musicians applying to study any subject can be awarded a scholarship worth up to £1,000, together with £500 of instrumental / singing tuition with experienced teachers.

Music Performance Scholarship

The University recognises the role that music and culture plays in the development of the individual and the benefits cultural activities bring to the wider University community. The scholarship is intended to encourage excellence and development in extra-curricular music performance, and includes instrumental/vocal tuition with experienced teachers. 

Around fifteen scholarships are awarded to new applicants each year. Students returning to the University in their second or third year are able to apply for a University Music Performance Award, which entitles them to a year's worth of instrumental / singing tuition in support of their involvement in music-making.

The scholarship rewards a recipient’s involvement in the extra-curricular musical life of the University; scholars are usually expected to contribute to a minimum of two relevant ensembles (where appropriate) as part of their commitment to the scholarship scheme. Scholarships will normally be allocated only to those students whose musical interests and talents can be supported within the University community. We welcome applications from all backgrounds.

How do they work?

Scholarships/Awards will normally be allocated only to those whose musical/vocal interests and talents can be supported within the University community. The number of years of instrumental and/or vocal study and performing experience, as well an applicant’s potential, will be taken into account.

Scholarship/Award recipients must be prepared to represent the University and to contribute to the cultural life of the University by participating in activities and events. Candidates must also be willing to act as ambassadors for the University and to agree to be featured in University publications and press releases.

The University of Kent reserves the right to withdraw the Scholarship/Award if the formal criteria are not met. In particular, if for any reason the holder ceases to be a registered student at the University, it will be suspended immediately.

How to apply

To apply for the Music Performance Scholarship (new registrants only) you should download the Application Form.

To apply for the Music Performance Award (returning students only) you should download the Application Form.

Once completed, e-mail your application to the Head of Music Performance (as a typed Word document or PDF only - other formats will not be accepted).

Applications will be considered and candidates who have been successful at this stage will be invited for interview and audition. Unsuccessful candidates will also be informed. (Due to the high volume of applications we receive each year, unfortunately it is not possible to offer specific feedback at this stage of the application process. We do, however, encourage all students to enjoy and participate in musical provision at the University.)

It is vital that, if your application is accepted, you then arrange an interview with the Director of Music as soon as you arrive at the University – these will be held in a number of Office Hours which will be published on-line prior to the start of term.

There is no deadline prior to the start of the academic year, but early application is advisable. Applications will only be considered up to 9am on Tuesday 17 September 2024, except in exceptional circumstances.

Interviews will be held in Welcome Week and Week 1 during which your audition will be arranged.

Guidance for applicants

Music Scholarships/Awards are intended to recognise and encourage  excellence. Applicants would usually be expected to demonstrate some or all of the following criteria when submitting their written application:

  • an advanced ABRSM grade (or equivalent, including RockSchool, Trinity or other international musical qualifications)
  • a significant musical profile whilst in school / college / university or the local community
  • appropriate performing experience at county or national level / conservatoire, e.g. youth choir, county orchestra, wind band, jazz or big band
  • experience in giving public performances, e.g. gigs or solo recitals, major role in musical theatre productions

If you would like to discuss the Music Scholarship/Award Schemes prior to your application, email the Head of Music Performance.

  • Interview - held during office hours in Welcome Week and Week One. This will be an opportunity to discuss your musical background and performing experience, and to indicate how you see yourself making a contribution to extra-curricular music, i.e. which ensemble(s) you are interested in joining. You will also be given a short piece of music to prepare for the audition (unless you are auditioning for the Symphony Orchestra, in which case this will be given out at the first orchestral rehearsal).
  • Audition - you will be expected to perform around 7 minutes' worth of music demonstrating your level of ability (usually one or two pieces); you will also perform the piece you are given to prepare at your interview, and there will be a short piece of sight-reading.

Candidates needing particular support or accessibility will be able to highlight these both on the written application form and at interview where necessary. For information regarding accessibility and Gulbenkian / Colyer-Fergusson, please see details on the Gulbenkian website here.

Kent and Medway Medical School Music Performance Scholarships

Funded jointly by Canterbury Christ Church University and the University of Kent, three individual scholarships for KMMS first-year students of £1,000. Intended to recognise existing musical talent, encourage excellence and development and reward participation in extra-curricular music performance these also include instrumental/vocal tuition with experienced teachers.

Other University scholarships

For information about other scholarships available at the University, including academic and non-academic scholarships and overseas loans, please follow the link below  


Music Scholar: Meg Daniel

Third-year Music Performance Scholar reading Law, Meg Daniel, in music by Enesco and Taffanel