Music Scholarships

We are excited to be offering a number of music scholarships for students in Year 7.

If successful, the scholarship will mean that students will receive the free loan of an instrument, together with free music tuition in school, for one year. This will be renewable annually depending on the student's Attitude to Learning grades and their progress with their instrument. The tuition will be ten 30 minute lessons a term, in small groups of no more than four students, and there will be the opportunity for free individual tuition for those who show commitment and who make excellent progress. Piano will be individual lessons from the outset. 

We have a wide range of instruments available, but scholarships are only available on instruments that are listed as endangered. These include double bass, cello, violin, viola, French horn, tenor horn, clarinet, flute, trumpet, tuba, auxiliary percussion (not drums) and bassoon. Please note that piano is only available to those students who have passed their ABRSM Grade 2 by the time of their audition in Year 6.

Since students will already be fairly competent at one instrument, our scholarships will not only prioritise those students willing to learn a second instrument but we will also give priority to those who would like to take up one of the endangered instruments or the piano.

Our scholarship students will also receive priority with respect to specific musical activities, trips and visits to enrich their musical experience.

The Selection Process

Selection will be through a series of short aptitude tests, which will be undertaken in school during the summer term before students join us. The tests will consist of an aural perception test featuring 60 questions relating to pitch, melody, texture and rhythm lasting approximately 45 minutes. It does not require any previous knowledge of music theory and there are no practice papers for the test.

Following the aural perception test, a limited number of applicants will be invited back to perform a solo piece on their chosen instrument (including voice). They will be asked some short questions about the piece they are to perform and about their general musical interests and experiences. They will also be asked to take some short aural tests. This will be adjudicated by a panel consisting of members of the Music Department.

As a general guide to level of musical ability, applicants will be expected to have reached at least Grade 2 ABRSM or equivalent standard on their main instrument, although it is not essential to have passed an actual examination.

The solo piece may be sung or played, and all styles are welcome. However, the piece performed should be at a suitable level for us to make a fair judgment of the applicant's musical aptitude and ability. Applicants should be careful not to attempt something too difficult - it is preferable to perform an easier piece well with good coordination and a keen sense of pitch and rhythm, rather than attempt something more advanced with a weak sense of pitch and rhythm.

Applicants must bring their own instruments, where practical to do so. An amplifier and lead will be provided for electric and bass guitarists. Any backing tracks must be accompaniment only. Applicants will not be permitted to play or sing along to a vocal CD and we strongly recommend that applicants perform unaccompanied. However, if an application does require an accompanist, a copy (not the original) of the piano part must be sent at least two weeks in advance for the attention of the Head of Music (extra-curricular). An accompanist will be provided and applicants are not allowed to bring their own.

Our Expectations

We expect our music scholarship students to take care of their loan instrument and to practise at home for at least half an hour a day. We will be asking parents to sign a daily practise log and we will also expect students to belong to one of our music groups which will involve public performances as required by that group.

How to apply

For students starting Year 7 in the normal round of applications, the opportunity to apply for a Music Scholarship is included in the electronic application form sent out to parents to complete.

For students starting mid-year or outside of the normal round of applications, an application form for the Music Scholarship will be included as part of your Induction Pack.