Music Scholarships

Benenden has a long-standing tradition of attracting and nurturing outstanding Music Scholars and Exhibitioners who take the lead within the School, and also forge their own musical paths via additional study and ensemble work.

Generous, means-tested bursaries, including fully funded places, are available for those who are awarded Music Scholarships. Music Scholars receive an hour's free instrumental tuition and a 30 minute session with the School accompanist; Music Exhibitioners receive 30 minutes free tuition and regular sessions with the School accompanist.

Music Award holders are expected to maintain high standards of musical excellence and to be an ambassador for Music through personal practice and enthusiastic participation. They are also expected to include Music as an academic option at GCSE and possibly up to A Level, depending on university and career plans.

Music Scholarship auditions take place each year at Benenden in November (Sixth Form) and in January (11+ and 13+). 

A pre-audition is strongly advised to determine whether an application is appropriate for the candidate, this can take place between one to three years before the year of entry. The Director of Music – Edward Whiting – is always delighted to receive enquiries about Music Scholarships, and can be contacted via the Admissions Office. 

Applicants will normally have reached a minimum of Grade 4/5 level for 11+, Grade 5/6 level for 13+ and Grade 8 for Sixth Form. We look for potential and qualities of self-motivation as well as high achievement and musicality, and place greater emphasis on these attributes than on exam certificates.

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, but not necessarily, 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 Benenden’s own entrance examinations, or by taking the Academic Scholarship examinations.

Further details of the awards on offer are available from the Director of Admissions.



The Director of Music visits Hong Kong each year to meet prospective candidates and their families, and to hold auditions and pre-auditions. For further information, please contact the Director of Admissions.