Instrument Purchase Loans


Each year the Trust is able to offer a small number of interest-free loans to former beneficiaries who are on the threshold of their careers, to help with the purchase of musical instruments. This is in recognition of the problem which faces so many musicians who, following their years of studentship, have no capital resources to equip themselves with the quality of instrument vital to the advancement of their careers. The Trust offers assistance in the form of interest-free instrument-purchase loans repayable over periods varying from 5 to 12 years depending on the size of the loan advanced.

Eligibility Criteria for an Instrument Purchase Loan:

  • You must have received a study award from the Trust in the past.
  • You must have completed your education and be working as a professional musician.

Application Procedure:

    • The application form will be available for online submission from 1 January 2021.
    • The closing date for submission of completed application forms, references and video recordings is midnight on 10 February 2021.  Applications received after this date will be rejected.
    • Please contact the Trust Secretary on if you encounter difficulties submitting online, or if you require additional help or support through the application and audition process.

Video Recording Information:

We appreciate that making a recording may be different from usual this year in view of coronavirus restrictions.  We have produced a guide which includes some tips on how to produce a recording that will be acceptable to the Trustees no matter what your circumstances, but some specific points to bear in mind are:

  • The audio quality is more important than the video quality for your recordings but follow our tips on camera position, etc. The recording must be unedited;
  • You should try to submit accompanied pieces performed with an accompaniment but this can be a “minus-one track” if you are unable to record with an accompanist.  Check the balance between your playing and the accompaniment;
  • If you are unable to produce recordings specifically for your Munster Trust application, we will accept recordings made for, for instance, college video auditions, but we do require all recordings to be uploaded to YouTube and YouTube links added to your application.  All recordings should be from within the past 6 months and please do not submit a recording/piece that you have used to support a previous application to the Munster Trust.
  • Please remember that the Trustees will not be assessing the quality of your recording but only the quality of your performance, and appreciate the challenges faced this year.

What to submit:

To accompany your application form, please include YouTube links to video recordings of two pieces contrasting in period, style and tempo.  The two pieces should each be approximately five minutes long.  Two separate links are required – one for each piece.

  • Do not submit two movements from the same work, or two pieces by the same composer.
  • Jazz candidates: We welcome recordings of you playing as part of a small band, so that the Trustees can judge your interaction with other players.  Where this is not possible, you may use backing tracks to replace the small band.  You should choose two pieces that best illustrate your interest and ability in areas of music that involve improvisation.

Uploading to YouTube:

  • Please note: all video recordings must be publicly viewable.  Please use either the unlisted or public privacy setting.
  • Ensure that all advertisements are turned off – please refer to the FAQs if necessary.
  • Please add the date on which the recording was made (and not just the date on which it was uploaded) to the Description section of YouTube as you upload your recording.


  • Two references must be submitted by midnight on 10 February 2021 as part of your application.  If your references are received after that date, your application may be rejected.
  • Please ensure your chosen referees are able to write in support of your application, giving particular attention to your future career prospects and dependability.  Comments on the suitability and price of the chosen instrument (if any) would also be helpful.
  • The reference form will be available for online submission from 1 January 2021.
  • You need to ask your referees to use this link Purchase Loan Reference or to go online to our homepage and follow the link entitled “Submit References? Instrument Purchase Loan Reference” from that homepage.
  • Please ask your referees to contact the Trust Secretary +44 (0)1428 685427 or if they encounter any difficulties submitting online.


  • You will not hear back from the Trust regarding auditions until early-mid April.
  • We are keeping all Government advice and restrictions relating to COVID-19 under review and, whilst we have set aside provisional dates for live auditions in London, it is looking increasingly unlikely that this auditions will go ahead.   If that is the case, candidates will be assessed on the basis of their application forms, recordings and references, and so candidates are advised to ensure that their applications and recordings submitted to the Trust are as strong as they can be in the circumstances.
  • If live auditions are possible, they will take place between April and June.  You must be prepared to audition in person in London, and the provisional audition dates for 2021 are as follows:
    Wednesday 21st April 2021 – Keyboard
    Thursday 6th May 2021 – Brass/Percussion/Woodwind
    Monday 10th May 2021 – Strings
    Wednesday 12th May 2021 – Woodwind
    Wednesday 19th May 2021 – Jazz – am
    Monday 24th May 2021 – Strings
  • If invited to audition, you will not be able to perform the pieces you have submitted with your application.

Loan offers:

  • Offers of loans are made to selected applicants after completion of the application process.  You may not hear the result of your application until early-mid June.


Applicants are advised that the information submitted, including personal information, will be used for assessment and evaluation purposes by the Countess of Munster Musical Trust Trustees, staff and appointed independent advisers. The Countess of Munster Musical Trust will use the information that you submit on the application form to help us determine your suitability for an audition, loan and other related purposes. For full details of our Privacy Notice, please click here. If you have any queries regarding the personal information we hold about you, please address them to the Trust Secretary.

Instrument Purchase Loan Application Form