Benenden has a long-standing tradition of attracting and nurturing outstanding Music Scholars who take the lead within the School, and also forge their own musical paths via additional study and ensemble work.
A Music Scholar is expected to maintain high standards of musical excellence and to be an ambassador for Music through her personal practice and enthusiastic participation. She is also be expected to include Music as an academic option at GCSE and quite possibly up to A Level, depending on her university and career plans.
Music Scholarship auditions take place each year at Benenden in November (Sixth Form) and in January (11+ and 13+). Applicants will normally have reached a minimum of Grade 4/5 level for 11+, Grade 6/7 level for 13+ and Grade 8 for Sixth Form. We look for musical potential and qualities of self-motivation as well as high achievement.
On the day of the audition, candidates will be given time to practise individually and then with the School Accompanist. The audition itself will consist of an interview, aural tests and the performing of three pieces, normally two contrasting items on the main instrument and one piece on any other instrument. Rather than traditional sight-reading, each candidate will be given an unaccompanied ‘quick study’ to prepare during their practice time which they then perform at the audition.
All Music Scholarship candidates will also be required to show that they have reached the general academic standards of any entrant either by sitting Common Entrance, Benenden’s own entrance examinations, or by taking the Academic Scholarship examinations.
Beyond fee remission of up to 10% (with further bursary funding available subject to means testing), Music Scholars also receive three periods of instrumental tuition each week – two with their main instrumental teacher and one with the School Accompanist. Further details of the awards on offer are available from the Director of Admissions.
A pre-audition with the Director of Music is advised to determine whether an application is appropriate for the candidate, and also to help her feel familiar with the Department before she comes for the Scholarship audition. The Director of Music – Edward Whiting - is always delighted to receive enquiries about Music Scholarships, and can be contacted via the Music Administrator.
Hong Kong Music Scholarships
The Director of Music visits Hong Kong each July to meet prospective candidates and their families, and to hold auditions and pre-auditions. The Benenden Hong Kong Trust is hugely committed to identifying and supporting talented students who wish to study at the School. For further information, please contact the Director of Admissions.